EPA Reaches Settlement with Wayne County, Mo., Landowners for Clean Water Act Violations

Lenexa, Kan. – October 9, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — EPA Region 7 has reached a proposed settlement that includes a $35,000 penalty to settle violations of the Clean Water Act associated with Wayne County, Mo., landowners Roger and Ken Williams. The property is located near Clubb, Mo.

EPA alleges that the Williamses placed fill material into a tributary of Turkey Creek in an attempt to build a lake on their property without first obtaining a necessary permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Under the Clean Water Act, landowners are required to consult with the Corps and obtain proper permits before engaging in earth-moving projects that cause damming or adverse impacts to waterways.

These actions impacted approximately 2,200 linear feet of stream. Placing fill material in a stream degrades watershed health, limiting the movement of fish, other aquatic organisms, and organic material. This can result in a decrease in wildlife diversity and directly impacts downstream landowners. The Corps discovered the violation during an April 2014 inspection, and referred the action to EPA.

As part of the agreement, the Williamses will protect 4,870 linear feet of stream and 27.7 acres of adjacent land on their property from future development to mitigate for lost aquatic functions.

The Clean Water Act seeks to protect streams and wetlands that form the foundation of the nation’s water resources. Clean water upstream is necessary to have healthy communities downstream. The health of rivers, lakes, bays, and coastal waters depend on the streams and wetlands where they begin. Streams and wetlands provide many benefits to communities by trapping floodwaters, recharging groundwater supplies, filtering pollution, and providing habitat for fish and wildlife.

The proposed settlement is subject to a 30-day public comment period before it becomes final. Information on how to submit comments is available online.

Contact Information: LaTonya Sanders, 913-551-7555,

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EPA

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) leads the nation's environmental science, research, education and assessment efforts. The mission of the Environmental Protection Agency is to protect human health and the environment. Since 1970, EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for the American people.

EPA employs 17,000 people across the country, including our headquarters offices in Washington, DC, 10 regional offices, and more than a dozen labs. Our staff are highly educated and technically trained; more than half are engineers, scientists, and policy analysts. In addition, a large number of employees are legal, public affairs, financial, information management and computer specialists.

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