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EPA fines owners of Kona cesspools

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced two fines totaling $144,696 for the continued operation in Kona of a dozen large-capacity cesspools in violation of the Safe Drinking Water Act.

EPA inspectors identified multi-unit residential buildings illegally discharging wastewater into 11 cesspools in Kealakekua. The owner, K. Oue, Limited, has agreed to pay a $88,545 penalty, install a compliant wastewater system and close all 11 cesspools.

In addition, in Kailua-Kona the Group Investments LLC failed to close a cesspool at a building that the company owns and leases to tenants Sherwin Williams and B. Hayman Co. Services. The Group Investments has agreed to pay a $56,151 penalty, install a compliant system and close the cesspool.

“Large-capacity cesspools can contaminate groundwater, streams and the ocean,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator John Busterud.

“EPA will continue our efforts to identify and take enforcement actions to close the remaining large
capacity cesspools in Hawaii.”

The federal government outlawed large-capacity cesspools in 2005.
Source: Hawaii Tribune Herald

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