Niangua Vista Condominium Owner’s Association referred to Attorney General for wastewater violations at Lake of the Ozarks

For more information: 573-751-1010
Volume 37-407 For Immediate Release: Oct. 30, 2009

JEFFERSON CITY, MO.-- The Missouri Department of Natural Resources today referred Niangua Vista Condominium Owner’s Association, located in Camdenton, to the Missouri Attorney General's Office to pursue legal action for violations of Missouri’s Clean Water Law.

On October 13, the department inspected the wastewater treatment facility as part of the sweep ordered by Gov. Jay Nixon and confirmed that violations previously documented in March 2009 were ongoing. The department observed three small leaks in the walls of the extended aeration basin, the chorine contact chamber was not operating properly, and neither the outfall nor the sampling port were marked as required in the operating permit. Niangua Vista did not address the violations after being notified multiple times in 2009 and were already being evaluated for further enforcement action.

In addition, the Missouri State Operating Permit for Niangua Vista wastewater treatment facility expired on Jan. 23, 2008. The department received an application for renewal in October 2008. On Jan. 28, 2009, the DNR returned Niangua Vista Condominium Owner’s Association renewal application as incomplete due to lapse of valid corporation status. While the association was reinstated by the Secretary of State’s office, the association did not resubmit the application to the department until October 26.

The association also failed to submit complete Discharge Monitoring Reports for September 2006 and never submitted reports for January, April, June, July, August, September and October 2007, January, April, May, June and September 2008 as required by the operating permit. The department sent a letter requesting the missing report after each of the months listed and has asked additional times for submission. Failure to submit monitoring reports violates Missouri’s Clean Water Law.

As a result of the observations listed above and during the file review, the department issued a letter of warning to Niangua Vista on April 24 and two notices of violation on Aug. 13 and Oct. 14. Due to the serious and continuous nature of these violations, the department has referred this matter directly to the Attorney General’s Office.

Missouri's Clean Water Law exists to protect public and environmental health, and the department is responsible for enforcing the law and regulations.

The department’s enforcement actions help protect human health and the environment by requiring facilities to maintain compliance. The department’s main goal in any enforcement action is to work with a facility to successfully achieve compliance with the standards and then ensure they have the tools to remain in compliance. As part of that process, penalties may be used as an incentive to ensure future compliance and to remove the economic benefit of continued noncompliance.

The department strives to work with owners and operators to fix problems before an issue is referred. In situations where the responsible party is unwilling or unable to cooperate to bring the facility into compliance and be protective of human health and the environment, the department will refer the case to the Attorney General’s Office for legal action.

For more information, contact the department’s Water Protection Program at 573-751-1300 or call toll-free at 800-361-4827.