September 2021 Enforcement Action Summary

Formal Enforcement Actions Issued
Formal Enforcement Actions Settled or Resolved
Superior Court Actions Issued
Superior Court Actions Settled or Resolved

This report includes formal enforcement actions issued or resolved by the Office of Compliance & Inspection (OC&I) for September 2021. This report is intended to inform the public of certain compliance/enforcement activities performed in the preceding month to protect the environment and the public's health, safety, and welfare.

Formal enforcement actions are taken to achieve compliance with law/regulations; remediate environmental damage; restore natural resources to appropriate conditions; impose penalties that capture the gravity of the situation and any economic benefit gained by the alleged violator; and deter similar actions in the future. Formal enforcement is generally in the form of a Notice of Violation (NOV) that alleges certain facts and violations, contains orders to resolve the alleged violations, contains an assessed penalty with supporting documentation regarding what factors OC&I used to determine the penalty, and, by law, allows a respondent the ability to appeal or contest the NOV to the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) Administrative Adjudication Division (AAD). Since most NOVs are contested cases, OC&I does not generally discuss the case with the public while the matter is awaiting hearing or pending negotiated settlement. NOVs are subject to release under the Access to Public Records law in Rhode Island. A copy of an individual NOV may be obtained through RIDEM's Office of Customer and Technical Assistance. OC&I often resolves formal enforcement actions through negotiated settlement agreements prior to hearing before AAD.

Media inquiries should be addressed to Jay Wegimont at 401-222-4700, ext. 2772402. Requests for file reviews should be addressed to Angela Spadoni at 401-222-4700, ext. 2777307, fax 401-222-3810. Please note that formal case names appearing in blue text may be clicked with a computer mouse to open a PDF version of the unsigned document.


Formal Enforcement Actions Issued:

September 20, 2021 - Water Pollution File No. OCI-WP-20-133 re: Vilma Perez for property located at 16 Gwinett Court in Providence, Rhode Island. The property is vacant land. Respondent owned the property during the time relevant to the NOV. OC&I alleges that Respondent violated Rhode Island's Oil Pollution Control Act and Oil Pollution Control RegulationsView the NOV.

September 20, 2021 - Underground Storage Tank File No. OCI-UST-20-56-01263 re: Imad E. Melhem and GNI West Warwick Inc. for property located at 929 Providence Street, Assessor's Plat 39, Lot 213 in West Warwick, Rhode Island. The property includes a service station and a motor fuel storage and dispensing system (facility). 929 Providence Street LLC owns the property. On April 21, 2014, the Rhode Island Secretary of State revoked the Certificate of Organization for 929 Providence Street LLC. Imad E. Melhem is the last known member or authorized person for 929 Providence Street LLC. GNI West Warwick Inc. operates the facility. OC&I alleges that Respondents violated Rhode Island's Rules and Regulations for Underground Storage Facilities Used for Petroleum Products and Hazardous MaterialsView the NOV.

September 21, 2021 - Freshwater Wetland File No. 15-62 re: Edward M. Carapezza for property located approximately 400 feet and 1,250 feet north of Woodville Road, at 336 Woodville Road and approximately 1,400 feet and 1,900 feet northwest of the intersection of Woodville Road and Tomaquag Road, Assessor's Plat 8, Lot 36 in Hopkinton, Rhode Island. Respondent owns the property. On April 30, 2018, OC&I issued a NOV to Respondent alleging that Respondent violated Rhode Island's Freshwater Wetlands Act and Rules and Regulations Governing the Administration and Enforcement of the Freshwater Wetlands ActView the NOV. Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, OC&I inspected the property and documented additional violations that OC&I alleges occurred after the NOV was issued. View the Amended NOV.

Formal Enforcement Cases - Settled or Resolved:

September 22, 2021 - Underground Storage Tank File No. OCI-UST-21-3-04883 re: Brian K. Wilkinson and Helen J. Wilkinson for property located at 1616 Warwick Avenue, Assessor's Plat 319, Lot 46 in Warwick, Rhode Island. The property includes an automobile service facility. Respondents own the property. On June 25, 2021, OC&I issued a NOV to Respondents alleging that Respondents violated Rhode Island's Rules and Regulations for Underground Storage Facilities Used for Petroleum Products and Hazardous MaterialsView the NOV. Respondents provided documents to OC&I to show that Respondents had complied with the regulations prior to the issuance of the NOV. For this reason, OC&I agreed to waive the administrative penalty and release the NOV.

September 24, 2021 - OCI/Solid Waste File No. 07-018 re: Joseph and Regina Adriano for property located at 1283 Ministerial Road, Assessor's Plat 61, Lot 56 in South Kingstown, Rhode Island. On 23 March 2006, OC&I inspected the property and observed approximately 116 cubic yards of solid waste deposited on the property in violation of Rhode Island's Refuse Disposal Act. OC& issued a Letter of Noncompliance to Respondents as the property owners informing them of the alleged violation and providing 60 days for removal of the solid waste to a licensed solid waste management facility. Follow up inspections on 19 December 2006 and 24 May 2007 revealed approximately 119 cubic yards and 757 cubic yards of solid waste, respectively, deposited on the property. On October 26, 2007, OC&I issued a NOV to Respondents. In the NOV, OC& ordered Respondents to remove all solid waste within 60 days to a licensed solid waste management facility and assessed a penalty of $6,250. Respondents failed to respond to or comply with the NOV. On November 30, 2015, the property was sold. The NOV was not recorded in the land evidence records of the Town of South Kingstown, Rhode Island, and as such, the penalty was not transferred to the new owner. On August 9, 2016, OC&I inspected the property and determined that no solid waste was present. Joseph Adriano is deceased. Given the age of the case, OC&I determined that it was not eligible for referral to the Department of Revenue for collection of the penalty, and the penalty was deemed uncollectible.

Superior Court Actions Issued:

None filed this month.

Superior Court Actions Settled or Resolved:

None settled or resolved this month.