News Release 436

Department refers Lake Landscaping and Construction Wastewater Treatment Facility, James Robinson in Camden County to Attorney General for enforcement action

Volume 37-436 (For Immediate Release)
Contact: Renee Bungart

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, NOV. 17, 2009-- The Missouri Department of Natural Resources today referred Lake Landscaping and Construction Wastewater Treatment Facility, owned by James Robinson, to the Missouri Attorney General's Office to pursue legal action for wastewater violations. Robinson failed to operate and maintain the wastewater treatment facility, located in Sunrise Beach in Camden County, and comply with the Missouri Clean Water Law and its implementing regulations.

On Oct. 15 and Oct. 19, the department conducted inspections of the wastewater treatment facility as part of the sweep ordered by Gov. Jay Nixon. During these inspections, staff observed the wastewater treatment facility was in complete disrepair. Staff observed the sand filter was completely covered in dense vegetation, there were no chlorine tablets in the applicator tube to provide disinfection of the effluent and the control panel was not connected to an electrical power supply. Robinson also failed to submit quarterly Discharge Monitoring Reports to the department, as required by its Missouri State Operating Permit No. MO-0125113, since Dec. 14, 2007. Failure to submit monitoring reports violates Missouri's Clean Water Law.

The department ordered Robinson to immediately cease all discharge from the wastewater treatment facility and pump and haul the wastewater from the existing facility to a permitted facility with the capacity to treat the wastewater until the facility is able to comply with all requirements in its permit. 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 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.