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Release Date: 2/15/1996
Contact Information: Lois Grunwald, U.S. EPA, (415) 744-1588

    (San Francisco)--The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) has ordered Silver City Mobile Manor and the Madonna Construction Co. to remove tons of dirt and rock that was illegally dumped into Morro Creek in San Luis Obispo County and to prepare a plan for restoring the site.

     The order requires Silver City Mobile Manor and the Madonna Construction Co. to prepare a site restoration plan by March 29, 1996. The work will include restoring the natural contour of Morro Creek and replanting the creek area with native plants.

     The current order follows a U.S. EPA January 18, 1996 cease and desist order that required cessation of discharges to the creek. The illegal activities occurred in November 1995 and involved extensive grading of a section of Morro Creek and the dumping of about 1,000 tons of dirt and rock in the creekbed. This grading and filling destroyed valuable riparian habitat and has increased the risk of flooding on adjoining properties.

     Under the federal Clean Water Act (CWA), discharges of fill materials to waterways and wetlands areas are illegal without a permit issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Silver City Mobile Manor and Madonna Construction Co. did not apply for a permit before dumping the materials into the creek.

     When issuing CWA permits, the Corps performs environmental review, which includes determining if there are alternatives to a proposed project that pose less risk to the environment.

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