Update: Heavenly Pays Fines for Environmental Violations

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SAM Magazine--March 28, 2013--Following an inspection by the Department of Toxic Substances Control in September 2010, which found several violations relating to a used-oil tank, Heavenly Valley, Calif., settled the matter this week by agreeing to pay a civil penalty of $94,000, an adminstrative fee of $26,000, and another $30,000 to Western States Project, which supports and enhances the environmental enforcement programs of its members. At no time did the oil tank release or spill any substance and when it was originally installed with the approval of El Dorado County, the Forest Service and Lahontan Water Quality Control Board in the early 1990s, the tank was completely in compliance with the standards at the time.

According to the report by the Department of Toxic Substances Control, the used-oil tank at the resort's upper maintenance shop was not in compliance with evolving state standards. The volations were: lacked controls to prevent spillage and overflow, the resort failed to have the tank assessed and inspected, failed to provide refresher training for the personnel in charge, and failed to maintain secondary containment of the used oil tank. Heavenly has since worked closely with the state to upgrade the waste containment facility at the site and has a plan for keeping current with the standards as they change. Heavenly  agreed to maintain tank assessments and tank inspection records, to provide personnel training for all site employees, to conduct daily tank inspections, to clean up any spills immediately and report them, to have an independent engineer assess the tank every five years, and to provide and maintain a secondary containment and ancillary equipment.

In a statement to SAM, Heavenly says, "The upside of this has been an ongoing, open dialogue with the state. This dialogue and the resulting relationship will help us stay in compliance in the future. Environmental stewardship and doing the right thing are important parts of our culture at Heavenly."


Looking for funding the easy way!

What a joke! Heavenly is the single most regulated Ski Resort in the US! It’s located in Nevada and California, Douglas County, Nevada, Alpine County California and El Dorado County in California. A large portion of the land is under an operating permit from the US Forest Service. The portion of the lands within the Tahoe Basin is under the jurisdiction of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency. The California lands are under the jurisdictions of the Lahonton Water Quality Control Board. All these fine folks issue some form of an operating permit to the resort. These agencies continue to talk about a public private partnership when it benefits their specific cause or agency. You’re telling me that not one of these agencies inspected the waste oil tank facility over the past 7 years! Come on folks, this is just a small minded pin headed agency extorting money from a Heavenly who has a reputation for being responsible stewards of the environment.

Witch hunt

It never said anything about spilled oil. This is purely a witch hunt for money by a government agency. Just think if that was a small company that couldn't find $150,000 somewhere else? I am all about keeping the environment clean, but this goes way to far. What if the EPA was also involved?