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Attorney General's News Release

March 19, 2009

Koster takes action to stop discharge of untreated sewage into tributary of Lake Taneycomo

Forsyth, Mo.  - Attorney General Chris Koster today obtained injunctions against two Taney County properties for continuing to discharge untreated sewage into a tributary of Lake Taneycomo. Preliminary injunctions have been issued against Damsite Improvement Association, which owns and operates the wastewater treatment facility serving the Damsite Subdivision, and Reflections LLC which owns and operates the facility serving the Hillbilly Country Motel.

"Lake Taneycomo is one of Missouri's finest natural treasures and is a major attraction for thousands of visitors to Missouri each year," Koster said. "We must be diligent to protect these resources and not hesitate to take strong action whenever violations of our environmental laws occur."

Damsite Subdivision, which contains approximately 10 residential lots, and the Hillbilly Country Motel are located along Highway 165 southwest of Branson. Damsite was sued in 2008 for discharging untreated sewage to the ground and was ordered to contain the sewage generated by the subdivision's wastewater system and then convey it to another site for proper treatment.

The lawsuit alleges that Hillbilly Motel since 2004 also has been sending untreated sewage into the Taneycomo tributary. In addition the owners have failed to upgrade facilities and submit all quarterly discharge monitoring reports.

The court orders require the defendants to:

  • Prevent any further discharge into state waters;
  • Continue pumping and hauling wastewater to a permitted facility for water treatment and lawful discharge;
  • Continue this process until the properties connect to an area-wide sewer system; and
  • Maintain pumping and hauling receipts and make them available upon request.

In addition, Damsite is required to meet all requirements of the city of Branson, Taney County and the Taney County Sewer District for connecting the wastewater generated within the Damsite Subdivision to the area-wide sewer authority. This may include granting easements for construction of the new sewer line and lift station, annexing into the city of Branson, and paying a connection fee to the city. Homeowners in the Damsite Improvement Association are responsible for connecting their homes to the area-wide sewer system.

Reflections LLC also must send a letter of intent to connect to an area-wide sewer system to the Taney County Commission, the Taney County Regional Sewer District and the City of Branson.

Both defendants are ordered to cease all discharges of untreated or undertreated sewage from their wastewater treatment facilities, and are subject to civil penalties up to $10,000 for violating the Missouri Clean Water Law.

 



 
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