Two Massachusetts Towns Fined for Clean Water Violations
Two towns in southeastern Massachusetts – Dighton and Rehoboth – are being fined for violating the federal Clean Water Act.
Dighton and Rehoboth each face a penalty of $3,000 for discharging storm water into several tributaries of the Palmer River and the Taunton River, respectively, without submitting an annual report that is essential for state and federal authorities to monitor compliance with the Clean Water Act. Several of these tributaries in each town are listed on the Massachusetts impaired water bodies list.
Towns that are permitted to discharge storm water to waters of the United States are required to submit an annual report evaluating the status of permit compliance by May 1 of each year. Both Towns initially failed to submit the first annual report due in 2004.
Despite the formal requests for the overdue reports by EPA, both Towns also failed to submit reports due in May 2005 and May 2006. Of the 278 municipalities in New England, Dighton and Rehoboth are the only two that failed to submit the 2005 and 2006 reports after receiving a formal information request. As such, each town has been in violation of the CWA from May 1, 2005 to April of 2007 when each Town submitted its overdue reports.
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