On 30 September 2014, CSPA settled a Clean Water Act lawsuit against the City of Watsonville for violations of the California General Industrial Stormwater Permit. The City operates a 1.6-acre Material Recovery Facility, a 5.8-acre Corporation Yard and a 100-acre landfill in Watsonville, California. The lawsuit alleged that the facilities discharged polluted stormwater into Watsonville Slough, Gallighan Slough, the Pajaro River and ultimately Monterey Bay.
The settlement agreement obligates the City to comply fully with the Clean Water Act, develop and implement a suite of Best Management Practices and structural improvements, conduct more frequent and comprehensive monitoring and prepare an adequate Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan. The agreement incorporates provisions that allow CSPA to return to court for enforcement if pollutant benchmarks continue to be exceeded.
As mitigation for past violations, Watsonville agreed to send $27,500 to the Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment to fund environmental projects to improve water quality in local watersheds. They also agreed to reimburse CSPA’s costs of bringing suit. The Law Offices of Andrew Packard represented CSPA in this matter.