Mo. city must upgrade sewer system

Bryan Cohen May 10, 2012, 6:41am


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Legal Newsline) - Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster announced a settlement on Wednesday with the city of Springfield requiring it to make sewer system improvements to improve water quality in nearby streams.

Under the terms of the settlement, the city will eliminate illegal overflows of untreated raw sewage and will spend at least $50 million on early action projects over the course of the next seven years. The city will submit its long-term control plan to the Department of Natural Resources next year.

Early action projects the city agreed to engage in include increasing the number of city employees handling sewer maintenance issues, increasing public outreach and education efforts, increasing the city's ability to quantify and monitor flow reductions, implementing a pilot program to reduce infiltration and inflow entering the system from private property, rehabilitating clay pipes and connections, constructing a new sewer line and increasing the disinfection capacity of one of the city's treatment plants.

The settlement is the result of allegations that untreated raw sewage was overflowing from bypasses from the city's two wastewater treatment plants and from the city's wastewater collection system.

"I appreciate the city of Springfield's cooperation and commitment to investing in its sewer collection and treatment system," Koster said. "These kinds of investments protect human health and the environment, spur economic development, and pave the way for a better and healthier quality of life."

Additionally, as part of the agreement, the city of Springfield will reimburse the Department of Natural Resources up to $40,000 for costs connected with implementing the consent judgment, which will be filed in Greene County Circuit Court.

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