News Release 438

Department of Natural Resources and Attorney General's Office reach settlement agreement with Celtic Painting for hazardous waste violations

Celtic Painting agrees to $28,600 in penalties

Volume 37-438 (For Immediate Release)
Contact: Renee Bungart

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, NOV. 18, 2009 -- The Missouri Department of Natural Resources and Attorney General's Office have signed a settlement agreement with Celtic Painting in St. Louis. Celtic Painting was cited with numerous violations of Missouri's Hazardous Waste Management Law and Regulations.

Celtic Painting agreed to $28,600 in penalties. Celtic Painting will pay $3,000, split between the St. Louis County School Fund and the St. Louis City School Fund over a time period of four quarters. The remaining $25,600 is suspended contingent on Celtic Painting not committing any repeat violations for five years following the effective date of the settlement agreement. The amount Celtic Painting will pay upfront was based on financial information regarding the company's ability to pay provided to the department by Celtic Painting.

Celtic Painting is a residential and commercial painting company that operates at multiple locations in St. Louis. In 2007, the DNR cited a major violation against Celtic Painting for failure to identify and properly dispose of hazardous waste. After receiving a compliant, the department conducted an inspection at Celtic Painting's 900 S. Second St. location and discovered a large abandoned shipping container containing more than 8,000 pounds of flammable and toxic paint waste.

Subsequently, the DNR inspected Celtic Painting's 9437 Watson Industrial Drive location. DNR found this facility failed to register as a generator of hazardous waste and operated as a storage facility for hazardous waste without a permit. Additionally, Celtic Painting failed to properly mark and label its containers of hazardous waste and failed to follow emergency preparedness requirements. With DNR direction and oversight, the responsible party corrected all violations at both locations.

Missouri's Hazardous Waste Management Law and Regulations exist to protect public and environmental health and the DNR is responsible for enforcing the law and regulations.

The department's enforcement actions help protect human health and the environment by requiring facilities to maintain compliance. The department's main goal in any enforcement action is to work with a facility to successfully achieve compliance with the standards and then provide information and tools to help them remain in compliance. As part of that process, penalties may be used as an incentive to ensure future compliance and to remove the economic benefit gained from past noncompliance.

In situations where the responsible party is unwilling or unable to cooperate to bring the facility into compliance and be protective of human health and the environment, the department will refer the case to the Attorney General's Office for legal action.

For more information on this enforcement case or other hazardous waste issues, please contact the department's Hazardous Waste Program at 800-361-4827 or 573-751-3176.