Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Thursday, May 03, 2007

The EPA Wants Your Comments on Moscow's Water Pollution

As we in Pullman and Whitman County live downstream from all of Moscow's numerous water pollution violations, I think we all should file a comment with the Environmental Protection Agency, especially since the City of Moscow and Mark Solomon have filed complaints against water rights transfers for the Hawkins Companies development in Whitman County.

The full EPA notice follows:
EPA proposes Penalty Against City of Moscow, Idaho for Clean Water Act Violations

REGION 10 (ORC-158)

Date of Notice: April 30, 2007

Comment Period Open Until: May 30, 2007

Action: Proposed Penalty Assessment under the Clean Water Act

Description of Violation and Relief Sought: Pursuant to Section 309(g)(4) of the Clean Water Act (“Act”), the Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10 (“EPA”) is providing public notice of the proposed penalty described below. In order to provide opportunity for public comment, EPA will not take final action in this proceeding prior to 40 days after publication of this notice.

EPA proposes to commence an administrative penalty action against the City of Moscow, Idaho (“Respondent”) for violation of the Clean Water Act (“CWA”). EPA alleges that the Respondent is in violation of its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) individual permit authorized under Section 402 of CWA. Violations include: Phosphorus, Dissolved Oxygen (“DO”), Total Residual Chlorine (“TRC”) and Fecal Coliform Bacteria. EPA proposes to assess a penalty in the amount of $134,000.

Persons wishing to comment on EPA’s proposed action or to become participants in this action may do so by submitting their address and telephone number, along with written comments, to the Regional Hearing Clerk at the address above within 30 days of the date of this notice. This is a Class II administrative penalty proceeding, governed by Section 309(g)(2)(B) of the CWA and the procedural rules found at 40 C.F.R. Part 22. The requirements that apply to public comment and participation are set forth in 40 C.F.R. § 22.45.

Name of Case: City of Moscow Wastewater Treatment Facility

Docket Number of the Complaint: CWA-10-2007-0114

Name and address of Complainant:
Michael A. Bussell, Director
Office of Compliance and Enforcement
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Region 10 (OCE-164)
1200 Sixth Avenue
Seattle, Washington 98101

Name and address of Respondent:
City of Moscow
P.O. Box 9203
Moscow, Idaho 83843

Name, address, and telephone number of Regional Hearing Clerk:
Carol Kennedy, Regional Hearing Clerk
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Region 10 (ORC-158)
1200 Sixth Avenue
Seattle, Washington 98101
(206) 553-0242

Location of Facility: Moscow, Idaho

Applicable Permit No.: ID-002149-1

Business/activity of Respondents: wastewater treatment facility

Comments Accepted: In accordance with 40 C.F.R. § 22.45, any person wishing to comment on or participate in this proceeding must notify the Regional Hearing Clerk within 30 days of this notice. The person must provide a name, complete mailing address, and any comments the person has on this action.

A copy of the administrative complaint is available for review and copying between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, at EPA’s Seattle Office (see address listed above).

For any additional information on this action, please contact Jamie Sikorski at (206) 553-5153.

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