News Release 435

McVicker Swine Operation in Macon County pays penalties for spill of swine effluent into the Middle Fork of the Little Chariton River

McVicker Swine Operation paid $3,000 in penalties and $826.06 in cost recovery

Volume 37-435 (For Immediate Release)
Contact: Renee Bungart

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, NOV. 17, 2009 -- The McVicker Swine Operation, near Bevier in Macon County, recently paid penalties and cost recovery for wastewater violations. Last week, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and the Attorney General's Offices signed a Settlement Agreement with the McVicker Swine Operation. The department cited the McVicker Swine Operation for violations of Missouri's Clean Water and Law and Regulations.

The Settlement Agreement included $826.06 in cost recovery payable to the state. The McVicker Swine Operation also paid $3,000 in penalties, which was paid to the Macon County School Fund.

On Sept. 28 and 29, 2008, the department conducted a complaint investigation and observed swine effluent flowing into the Middle Fork of the Little Chariton River from a ditch adjacent to a field where a center pivot land application system was over-applying swine effluent. On Oct. 21, 2008, the department issued a notice of violation to McVicker for discharging water contaminants into waters of the state which reduced the quality of such waters below the water quality standards established by the Missouri Clean Water Commission.

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 a deterrent to future violations and to remove the economic benefit of continued noncompliance.

The department strives to work with owners and operators to fix the problems and reach a settlement agreement. However, 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.