Builder of the links of Columbia, Mo., to Pay $430,000 civil penalty for construction stormwater violations
Kansas City, Kan -- Lindsey Construction Company, Inc., of Fayetteville, Ark., and one of its associated limited partnerships have agreed to pay a $430,000 civil penalty to the United States to settle a series of construction stormwater violations that occurred during development of The Links of Columbia, a nine-hole golf course and 64-building apartment project in Columbia, Mo.
Through a stipulation of settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice and EPA Region 7, filed today in U.S. District Court in Jefferson City, Mo., Lindsey Construction and The Links at Columbia, LP, agree to pay the civil penalty for violations of the federal Clean Water Act and terms of a construction stormwater permit issued by the State of Missouri.
EPA Region 7 inspected the construction site in May 2007 and noted failures to implement and maintain practices to minimize runoff, failures to follow a stormwater pollution prevention plan, failure to comply with water quality standards, and failures to conduct site inspections. EPA determined that the construction site lacked proper erosion controls, leading to accumulation of silt and sediment in Hominy Branch, a tributary of Hinkson Creek.
Previous inspections by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) in July 2006 and April 2007 also found the defendants were not complying with stormwater management requirements, resulting in a letter of warning and a notice of violation issued by MDNR.
EPA issued a separate administrative compliance order to the defendants in August 2007, directing the companies to adhere to the requirements of the construction stormwater permit and take immediate actions to reduce runoff at the construction site.
Stormwater runoff from construction sites can be a significant environmental concern. Construction activity tends to increase soil erosion and runoff, which can choke streams and lakes with sediment. Such runoff, which may contain high levels of pollutants, results in increased turbidity and decreased oxygen in streams, killing fish, destroying spawning beds and suffocating fish eggs. Sediment-laden runoff also blocks light and reduces the growth of beneficial water grasses.