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April 15, 2014

Habitual Dumpers Could Go to Jail and Face $10,000 a Day Fine Under New Council Proposal

HONOLULU — Firms and individuals that engage in illegal dumping will face fines of up to $10,000 per day, criminal prosecution and be forced to restore land to its natural condition under three new bills that will be introduced at tomorrow’s Honolulu City Council meeting by District 1 Councilmember Kymberly Marcos Pine.

According to Bills 35, 36, and 37, violators of the City’s grading and stockpiling ordinances, which regulate illegal dumping, will see a 500% increase in maximum civil fines which now increase from $1,000 per day to $5,0000 per day for the most egregious violations.

Additionally, for the most egregious violations, including those committed by the same firm or person at the same site in a 12-month period (‘repeat violators’), the City will pursue criminal prosecution and double the daily fines, subjecting a violator to a potential penalty of $10,000 a day while the violation exists, and order the violator to return the land to its natural state.

“We encourage our community to be vigilant in reporting illegal dumping activity. These bills send a strong message that haulers improperly disposing of sludge and waste will not be tolerated by the community or the city,” said Councilmember Kymberly Pine.

Leeward Oahu residents have long fought illegal dumping, but the issue started to garner attention island-wide in the fall of 2013 when a trucking company spilled dredged sludge on H-1 on its way from Hawaii Kai to illegally dump thousands of pounds of the sludge on agriculturally-zoned land in Waianae.

Bills 35, 36, and 37 will be formally introduced on Wednesday, April 16th at the City Council meeting in Mission Memorial Auditorium.

Councilmember Pine represents residents of District One (Ewa, Ewa Beach, Kapolei, Honokai Hale, Ko Olina, Nanakuli, Maili, Waianae, Makaha, Keaau, Makua) and chairs the Intergovernmental Affairs and Human Services Committee.


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