It was announced by City Administrator Mary Leith, that the city of Delta Junction and the EPA have been in negotiations concerning the alleged violations to the Safe Drinking Water Act.
The EPA claims that the city allowed the movement of fluids into an Underground Source of Drinking Water. These violations were discovered at the public works and the fire department buildings.
In these buildings the floor drains emptied directly into the septic system. The water collected through these floor drains would typically contain road grease and grime, which was banned from being introduced into the ground in 2000. All such floor drains were to be closed off and sealed by 2005.
The EPA conducted site inspections in Delta in July of 2018. This is when the violations were discovered.
The city received a letter from the EPA notifying them of the violations in February of 2019. In the letter it said that the EPA desires to discuss the matter before issuing a compliance and penalty order. The city claims that there have been numerous attempts to make contact with the EPA, which were all unsuccessful.
There had been very little movement towards resolving this situation since the February letter. The city has now been sent a Consent Agreement that will be signed by the end of the week according to Leith.
Leith also indicated that a penalty of $22,000 is part of the agreement.
Delta Junction Mayor JW Musgrove was questioned if anyone from the city asked the EPA at any point during the negotiations if there was some way to mitigate the imposition of the monetary fine. Musgrove said, No.” When asked why, Musgrove replied, “The city has got money.”
Delta Wind tried to further understand why such an elementary question was never posed to the EPA. Musgrove fired back that he will not answer any more questions and to get out.