Tara Monks / Sumner Washington landowners fined by EPA for destroying wetland

Sumner Washington landowners fined by EPA for destroying wetland

Washington Environmental Attorney Alert: Sumner property owners filled wetlands without permits, fined by EPA and ordered to restore area.

Landowners filled wetlands, fined by EPA.
Sumner Washington landowners fined by EPA for destroying wetland

// West Palm Beach, FL, USA // Tara Monks // Tara Monks

Seattle, WA – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Wednesday, August 18, 2010, that landowners Michael and Stacey Ota agreed to pay an $18,000 penalty for alleged Clean Water Act violations at their property in Sumner, Washington.

According to EPA, the Otas placed fill material into four acres of wetlands in 2005, without the required permits from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. On July 29, 2009, EPA ordered the Otas to restore the wetlands to their original state. Since the demand was made, the Otas restored the wetlands. They will remain under EPA monitoring until 2019.

According to the release, Michael Ota filled the wetlands without the proper permits before, and voluntarily restored the area in 1996 with the assistance of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Tom Eaton, Director of EPA’s Washington Operations office explains that wetlands are essential for fish and aquatic life survival. He stated, “Landowners who plan to work in wetlands or other waters must obtain the right permits and follow the requirements to protect these valuable resources. Wetlands like this help maintain water temperature in fish spawning areas.”

Waters from the Otas’ property flow into Jovita Creek, which is a tributary to the White River, a fish bearing stream. The White River is currently identified as impaired for high temperatures.

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