Desert Water Agency fined for sewage collection system spill

San Juan Bautista agrees to penalty for wastewater discharge violations

The Central Coast Water Board has reached an $870,000 settlement with the city of San Juan Bautista for 327 alleged violations, dating back to March 2007, in connection with discharges from its wastewater treatment and reclamation facility. The alleged violations include exceedances of limits for salts, bacteria and other parameters.

“This settlement reflects many years of negotiation with San Juan Bautista and the outcome supports a long-term multi-benefit solution protecting water quality and increasing water supply resiliency in San Benito County,” said Matthew Keeling, Central Coast Water Board executive officer.

The settlement allows San Juan Bautista to apply $696,000 of the $870,000 financial penalty toward construction of a sewer main to convey San Juan Bautista’s wastewater to the city of Hollister’s Domestic Water Reclamation Facility for advanced treatment and recycling.

Presently, San Juan Bautista is permitted to discharge treated wastewater to a drainage channel adjacent to its wastewater treatment facility that flows to San Juan Creek, a tributary to the San Benito River. After completion of the sewer main project conveying San Juan Bautista’s wastewater to Hollister’s Domestic Water Reclamation Facility, San Juan Bautista will decommission its wastewater treatment facility and no longer operate or discharge from a wastewater treatment facility.

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