Wed | Sep 20, 2017

Stinky situation forces action from NEPA

Published:Sunday | March 6, 2016 | 3:00 AMCorey Robinson
Stagnant water at the malfunctioning sewage plant near the Gardens of Acadia in upper St Andrew.

The National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) has started legal proceedings against the developers of the Gardens of Acadia apartment complex after they failed to rectify issues relating to a sewage-treatment plant on the property.

Last month, following several meetings over the faulty sewage-treatment plant which is making life hellish for apartment residents and their neighbours, NEPA instructed the strata operators that they had until February 29 to turn over schematic plans and other documents regarding the plant.

But according to Morjorn Wallock, director of the Legal and Enforcement Division at NEPA, two days after the deadline those directives had not been met.

"The status quo remains unchanged. The division is preparing for court. I am attempting to have the process filed shortly," Wallock told The Sunday Gleaner via email last Wednesday.

Wallock said the developers were asked to turn over the schematic plans so arrangements could be made to connect the plant to the general National Water Commission (NWC) system.

She added that the developers are operating the more than 10-year-old plant without the relevant licences.

LEGAL ACTION

"Coming out of a meeting last month, the strata was warned that they need to get the documentation to NWC, and they are also aware that if they didn't do this before the end of the month legal action would be taken by NEPA," argued Wallock.

She said the Ministry of Health may also have a stake in the matter due to the various health concerns raised.

The plant has been working on and off since late last year, becoming a health hazard as rats, roaches, flies and other pests are reportedly crawling from it into residents' homes.

The stagnant sewage sends a blanket of stench over the apartment complex and surrounding homes, making breathing difficult for some residents.