Cottage Grove Fined for Violating Clean Water Act

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) recently fined the city of Cottage Grove $4,500 for Clean Water Act violations committed in the city’s operation of its wastewater treatment plant, which is located along the Coast Fork Willamette River on North Douglas Avenue. Specifically, the city discharged high temperature effluent to the river on multiple occasions in June; applied “recycled water” that was high in bacteria to land on multiple occasions in July; and was late in submitting annual reports to DEQ for 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015. The city’s Clean Water Act permit expired in 2014 (see story in news this issue), however DEQ allows the city to continue discharging to the river pursuant to the terms of the expired permit.