Mobile Home Park Owner Faces State Lawsuit Over Clean Water Law

6 years 1 month 2 days ago Thursday, September 13 2012 Sep 13, 2012 Thursday, September 13, 2012 7:25:00 AM CDT September 13, 2012 in Continuous News
By: Elise Oggioni
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COLUMBIA - A mid-Missouri mobile home park owner is in some hot water with state officials Thursday after allegedly violating the state's Clean Water Law in several mobile home parks.

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has sued John Payne of Payne Enterprises in Columbia for such violations as including failure to renew the operating permit and submit the annual reports at wastewater treatment facilities within three mid-Missouri mobile home parks: Little City Mobile Home Park near Centralia; Tower Mobile Home Park in Fulton; and Westgate Mobile Home Park in Mexico.  

The lawsuit was filed in Boone County Circuit Court, and it seeks preliminary and permanent injunctions against the developer. The lawsuit also seeks to collect damages for as much as $10,000 a day since 1993.

Violations by mobile home park include:

Listed by mobile home park, the violations in the petition for injunctions and civil penalties filed by Koster's office include:

Little City:

¦Not renewing its state water pollution permit since it expired on Nov. 12, 2004.
¦Not filing required annual wastewater discharge monitoring reports to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources as required by Missouri Clean Water Regulation and its state water pollution permit filed for Little City since 1993.
¦Not filing annual operations reports required by the state water pollution permit filed for Little City since November 1996.

Tower:

¦Not filing monthly discharge monitoring reports to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources required by Missouri Clean Water regulations and Tower's state water pollution permit since March 2008.
¦Not ensuring Tower's wastewater treatment facilities are "maintained as a stable, water-tight structure" by not removing deep-rooted plants on lagoon berms and not keeping the slopes of the berms below the mandated ratio since at least Oct. 22, 2007.
¦Not properly marking where treated water is released and failing to install a locking gate at the wastewater facility since at least Oct. 22, 2007.

Westgate:

¦Operating the wastewater treatment facilities without a state water pollution permit.
¦Polluting Brushy Branch stream with untreated or undertreated wastewater on July 12, 2011, and potentially other dates.
¦Not keeping the lagoon berm slopes under the mandated ratio and not removing deep-rooted plants from the berms on July 12, 2011, and potentially other dates.
¦Failing to install a locking gate, proper fencing and warning signs on all sides of the fence around the wastewater treatment facilities.
¦Not filing monthly discharge monitoring results to the Department of Natural Resources that are required by Missouri Clean Water regulations.
¦Not paying annual wastewater treatment facility permit fees, late fees and interest.

KOMU 8 News did contact Payne directly, and was told that he was "negligent on paperwork" and "too busy" to speak with us. KOMU 8 News was also escorted off the property in Mexico, and Payne told us when he bought these properties years ago, there were already lawsuits in process in at least one of the parks.

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