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Enforcement in Action Quick Links

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is committed to finding the most effective resolution to each violation, with the specific objective of preventing the next violation. Beyond penalties and other traditional enforcement actions, DEP continues to improve its use of innovative approaches, cutting-edge technologies, and targeted activities to reduce environmental harm and human health risk.

Compliance Assistance Projects In-Kind Projects Pollution Prevention Projects in Enforcement (P2 PiE)

Compliance Assistance Projects
Compliance assistance means helping businesses, facilities and local governments meet the requirements of state environmental regulations.


Hanging clothes

As a result of proactive compliance assistance with the dry cleaning industry, the Southwest District has a substantial decline in enforcement.

A personal visit by the Southwest District compliance inspector was conducted in September 2007-2008 to all 44 registered dry cleaners in the district. This compliance assistance training was a proactive approach to address a trend in similar enforcement cases in this particular sector. The visit provided education focusing on the registration and recordkeeping requirements (i.e. user-friendly calendar), maintenance of the units, the new leak check requirement (hand-held monitor device), a copy of the rule and the Statement of Compliance the “State of Florida Guidelines For Proper Management of Dry Cleaning Separator Water” document, and a copy of the “Dry Cleaner Air Quality General Permit Annual Compliance Certification Form” were also provided. The dry cleaning owners and operators appreciated the DEP’s efforts, especially the calendars which were mailed. Because of the compliance assistance, DEP has seen a substantial decline in enforcement. A follow-up package was mailed to the dry cleaners in early 2008 which included a cover letter, the 2009 Compliance Calendar, guidance on the requirement for notification to EPA and DEP, and the Small Business information.


In-Kind Projects
For some violations, the responsible party may be allowed to implement an in-kind project in lieu of or to reduce a monetary penalty. The in-kind project must go beyond what is required or what would be done in the normal course of the violator’s business—and they must be valued at a minimum of 1.5 times what a civil penalty would be. (In all cases outlined below, the in-kind project meets the test of being valued at more than the penalty.) In-kind projects are win-win. The responsible party pays for a worthwhile project and the public benefits from the value added by that project to the quality of the local environment and, in some cases, improvements to state-of-the-art resource protection.


Dairies can lessen their impact with more efficient handling of solids and improved nutrient distribution.

Shenandoah Dairy, in Suwannee County, with a herd of 6,049 cows, was in violation of industrial wastewater requirements. The dairy signed a consent order requiring payment of $3,800 in civil penalties along with more efficient handling of solids and improved nutrient distribution through construction of a larger stacking pad and two ramps at the end of the static settling basin.

The stacking pad provides increased area for solids and allows more storage time and dewatering, which result in drier solids that can be transported to more locations for nutrient distribution. The newly located ramps provide better access to the basin and allow water to drain as solids are collected.

SOUTH DISTRICT: Pigeon Key Foundation, Inc.
Following a discharge of diesel fuel, Pigeon Key Foundation, Inc., was found in violation of rules governing above ground storage tanks and hazardous waste. The Foundation signed a consent order requiring payment of $13,500 in civil penalties. After several months of payments, the Foundation approached DEP about paying the remaining balance through environmental enhancement projects.

One project involved determining whether hurricane-damaged mangroves on Pigeon Key should be removed or remain in place and establishing more than 200 new mangroves and other plants along the shoreline. Another project involved planting more than 250 plants to promote shore stabilization, manage stormwater runoff, and reestablish native scenery on Knight’s Key (north end of Seven Mile Bridge) damaged by hurricanes.

NORTHWEST DISTRICT: City of Blountstown

Blountstown operates a domestic wastewater treatment facility that was determined to be in violation of wastewater requirements. The city signed a consent order requiring payment of $24,625 in civil penalties. As an alternative, the city proposed a project to better identify sewer line problems, such as breaks and areas of inflow and infiltration. The project included purchase and installation of video equipment to monitor sewer mains, allowing the city to quickly and easily identify and reduce sources of contamination entering surrounding soils.


Pollution Prevention Projects in Enforcement (P2 PiE)

A Pollution Prevention Project in Enforcement (P2PiE) is one that a responsible party agrees to implement as part of an enforcement settlement, which must eliminate or reduce the toxicity of pollution released to the environment.

P2PiEs provide the responsible party an opportunity to help the environment beyond the requirements in statute or rule, at the same time benefiting its own operations. Eliminating or reducing the generation of waste in facility operations reduces production costs, leading to greater competitiveness and economic vitality for the company. At the same time, the project reduces waste generated in the community where the company operates. PiE costs may exceed the amount of the assessed penalty, but if the cost of the P2PiE is less than the assessed penalty, the responsible party must pay the difference to DEP.

CENTRAL DISTRICT: EdgeWater Power Boats
EdgeWater Power Boats, a manufacturer of hand-crafted, semi-custom boats, was found in violation for failure to renew a Title V air permit and conduct visible emission tests. The company was assessed a civil penalty of $17,500. However, by implementing two pollution prevention projects to reduce hazardous waste and air pollutants, the company was allowed to offset the entire penalty.

Employee using a water-based cleaner, known as Accustrip

Employee using a water-based cleaner, known as Accustrip, which can be cleaned and reused reducing the generation of hazardous waste.

The company replaced an acetone cleaner with a water-based cleaner that can be cleaned and reused, reducing hazardous waste by more than 2,600 gallons per year. A parts cleaning system, purchased to work in conjunction with the water-based cleaner, uses compressed air to power a rotating brush that removes resin from tools and spray guns and cleans the lines of the gel coat rigs. The technique allowed an on-site distillation project to recycle acetone to be abandoned.

The company also changed production from open molding to closed molding and reduced hazardous air pollutants, developing new lamination schedules, testing infusion hose locations, and training employees to support the increased volume of closed molding production. A high volume mixer system was purchased to automate resin and catalyst mixing and eliminate overages and employee exposure caused by manual mixing methods. Resin usage was reduced from 81 percent to 70 percent and resin waste has been reduced by nearly 10,000 pounds annually. .

SOUTH DISTRICT: Fenton Davis Painting Inc.
Fenton Davis Painting Inc., a commercial painting company, violated hazardous waste handling procedures, resulting in a civil penalty of $15,180. By implementing two pollution prevention projects, reducing volatile organic compounds released from paint and reclaiming and reusing solvents, the company was allowed to offset $11,385 of the penalty.

Fenton Davis purchased three high-volume/low-pressure painting guns to save primer, paint and solvents by reducing overspray. The company should see a savings of about 80 gallons of paint products and $6,000 each year, recouping the cost of the new guns in just 11 months.

To reduce and reclaim cleaning solvents, the company purchased a distillation system, reclaiming one five gallon batch of paint thinner/mineral spirits per day. The company will see a $7,000 annual savings that will pay for the new system in a little more than two years.


CDR Systems Corporation, a manufacturer of polymer concrete and fiberglass boxes, vaults and pads, caused several hazardous waste violations and was assessed $24,390 in civil penalties. By implementing pollution prevention projects that reduce volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) from paint, the company was allowed to offset $18,292.50 of the penalty.

The pollution prevention project included the installation of a new non-atomizing gel coat spraying system that will use less pressure and direct gel coat more efficiently, avoiding the fine aerosol mist that occurs in old spray guns and decreasing the amount of styrene and methyl methacrylate emissions (both are VOCs and HAPs). Testing conducted by the Clean Manufacturing Technology Institute has indicated an average 43 percent reduction in emissions when switching from atomizing to non-atomizing systems. As a result, CDR Systems Corporation is saving approximately $4,000 annually.

Bev Smith Toyota was found to be in violation of proper management of hazardous waste and used oil, which resulted in a $16,000 civil penalty. The dealership implemented several pollution prevention projects estimated at $5,000. By installing a Uni-ram solvent recycler unit to reclaim used lacquer thinner generated by the body shop, the company was able to reduce the solvent waste by approximately 85 percent. The company also purchased an aerosol can recycling system to puncture and drain spent aerosol cans, allowing proper disposal of the contents and recycling the cans as scrap metal.

NORTHWEST DISTRICT: eb Pipe Coating Inc.
eb Pipe Coating Inc., a manufacturer of coatings and liners for large-diameter pipes, caused several hazardous waste and used oil violations. The company was assessed $31,600 in civil penalties, of which more than $6,000 was offset with the purchase of a solvent recycler used for methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) recovery.

eb Pipe Coating changed the procedure for cleaning metal surfaces to segregate hazardous and non-hazardous solvents. The company now dispenses acetone, a solvent that emits volatile organic compounds, in small amounts onto wiping rags, eliminating liquid waste in metal cleaning. The rags are laundered and reused. The company reduced acetone costs by approximately $6,000 per year. By adopting the procedure for cleaning metal surfaces the company significantly reduced its hazardous waste from an average of five drums a month to less than one drum (drums are typically 55 gallons).

Wheelblast, Inc., which manufactures pilings for harbors, failed to meet an air permitting deadline and was assessed $9,000 in civil penalties. By implementing a pollution prevention project, Wheelblast was able to offset $7,200 of the penalty. The company installed a large diameter permanent pipeline to provide electrically compressed air to the coating yard, which replaced a diesel air compressor that operated the coal tar epoxy coating area. The new pipeline reduces 4,500 pounds of carbon dioxide and some $600 in fuel costs each month, which will pay for the installation in about a year.


Last updated: January 24, 2011

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