On April 8, the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) agreed to implement a statewide compliance program and to pay a $750,000 civil penalty to settle alleged Clean Water Act violations at two road construction sites.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, two sites inspected in 2010 and 2011 had significant erosion control issues, including the lack of adequate stormwater-control measures. Inspectors also cited MoDOT for failing to develop and appropriately update a sufficient pollution-prevention plan, as well as for unsatisfactory record keeping and self-inspections.

The consent decree requires MoDOT to establish a stormwater compliance management structure to increase oversight in erosion control. A stormwater compliance manager will oversee stormwater compliance statewide. Additionally, each construction project will have a compliance manager and environmental construction inspector. MoDOT also will implement an electronic stormwater compliance database to track the correction of stormwater deficiencies identified during self-inspections.

The consent decree also requires a stormwater training program for employees and third-party oversight inspections, which require a consultant or MoDOT inspector not affiliated with the project to conduct additional inspections at environmentally sensitive areas in Missouri. Environmentally sensitive areas include those that provide critical habitat for threatened or endangered species or those where downstream waterbodies are impaired by sediment.

The consent decree is subject to a 30-day public comment period and approval by the federal court.