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PUBLIC SERVICE AUTHORITY IN VIRGINIA AND FORMER EMPLOYEE PLEAD GUILTY
Release Date: 01/22/99
FOR RELEASE: FRIDAY, JANUARY 22, 1999
PUBLIC SERVICE AUTHORITY IN VIRGINIA AND
FORMER EMPLOYEE PLEAD GUILTY
The Henry County Public Service Authority and Mark L. Nolen, a former supervisor, pleaded guilty on Jan. 13 in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Roanoke to violating the Clean Water Act. The charges arose from the improper operation and maintenance of the Upper Smith Wastewater Treatment Plant and the alleged failure to accurately monitor and report the pollutant content of discharges from the Upper Smith facility and from the Piedmont Estates Sewage Treatment Lagoon. Failure to properly maintain the Upper Smith facility resulted in the periodic discharge of sewage solids into the Smith River between January 1992 and November 1995. The discharge of sewage solids can introduce sufficient quantities of bacteria into surface waters to make them unsafe for recreational uses and can harm aquatic life. The case was investigated by the EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division with the assistance of the EPA’s National Enforcement Investigations Center, the FBI and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality and was prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice.
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