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Port of PA to settle suit on boatyard discharge

June 11th, 2014 - 5:22am

(PORT ANGELES) – The Port of Port Angeles will settle a lawsuit with an environmental citizens group, that alleged the Port had violated environmental benchmarks under the boat yard general permit.

“Waste Action Project” (WAP) is a Seattle based non-profit with a mission of increasing the enforcement of the Clean Water Act in Washington State.

Last September, after monitoring the Department of Ecology's website for data, WAP made it known that they intended to file a lawsuit against the port.

Port director of engineering, Chris Hartman, says the lawsuit named the port as exceeding established benchmarks for zinc and copper.

Hartman says that the port was already working on a system to handle the zinc and copper discharges when the lawsuit was filed.

Yesterday, port commissioners approved a settlement agreement in which the Port will pay $16,500-dollars in attorney's fees. In lieu of a penalty payment, WAP has agreed to allow the Port to pay $10,000-dollars to the Feiro Marine Life Center for use on the Peabody Creek watershed project. Total cost to the Port for the settlement was $26,500-dollars.

The settlement, once approved by the U.S. District Court in Tacoma, will remain in effect for a two year period. If no other issues arise in that time, the case will be dismissed without the possibility of any further legal action.

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