OMAHA, Neb. - A Sioux Falls-area development company, River Greenway Hospitality LLC, has been issued a Class 1 Administrative Penalty for failure to comply with the terms and conditions of a Department of the Army permit issued pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.
The Corps recently issued a penalty in the amount of $6,950 after the permit holder failed to comply with the terms and conditions of Nationwide Permit No. 33 for construction of a temporary work platform associated with the demolition of the Sioux Falls River Ramp Parking Structure.
In December 2011, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Omaha District, South Dakota Regulatory Field Office verified the use of Nationwide Permit No. 33 for construction of a temporary rock work pad in association with the demolition of the Sioux Falls River Ramp Parking Structure. The terms and conditions of the NWP authorization included requirements for adhering to the approved construction plans as well as maintaining proper soil erosion and sediment controls.
In response to citizen inquiries, a Corps’ compliance review confirmed the permit holder, River Greenway Hospitality LLC, failed to adhere to the approved construction plans and permit conditions. The temporary rock work pad was never constructed; instead, upon demolition of the parking ramp, the debris was allowed to fall directly into the Big Sioux River. Whereby, the debris was used as a work pad for further demolition of the parking structure. In addition, during demolition there were no soil erosion and sediment controls in the form of silt fence and/or turbidity controls (silt boom curtain, etc.) in place. This resulted in an uncontrolled sediment plume of small concrete particles being discharged into the Big Sioux River. Upon notification of their noncompliance, River Greenway Hospitality LLC initiated and completed all on-site corrective measures which included the removal of unpermitted debris and the installation of proper sedimentation and erosion controls.
Sioux Falls has experienced tremendous growth and urban revitalization, according to South Dakota Regulatory Program Manager, Steve Naylor. “Permit holders must understand that the associated conditions must be taken seriously to minimize impacts to waters of the United States and protect water resources that are important to the public,” said Naylor.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the administrator of the congressionally enacted Clean Water Act, which was established in 1972 to protect the Nation’s waterbodies, including sensitive and important wetland environments. Section 404 of the Clean Water Act establishes a program to regulate the discharge of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States, including wetlands. The Corps' regulatory program also maintains an enforcement program to deter unauthorized activities and noncompliance with the issued permits. In this case, the Corps' program enforcement efforts included issuing a fine.