Discharge to Hydrologically Connected Waterways

River Watch vs. City of Healdsburg

Case Number: C01-4686 WHA

Date filed: September 17, 2001

Healdsburg owns, maintains, and operates a wastewater treatment, refuse and disposal facility that serves the City of Healdsburg and adjacent areas. Treated effluent is disposed of in Basalt Pond located south of the facility and adjacent to the Russian River. Basalt Pond is hydrologically connected to the Russian River and can be considered a tributary to the Russian River, and therefore waters of the United States. The treatment facility has chronic pollution problems associated with its antiquated collection system, undersized facility, old equipment, and inconsistent maintenance schedule. Due to its proximity to and hydrological connection with the Russian River, Basalt Pond discharges directly to the Russian River. Each day that Healdsburg discharges into Basalt Pond it is violating the Clean Water Act. Healdsburg has no NPDES permit allowing it to discharge to any waters of the United States. After a favorable ruling in U.S. Federal District Court, this case is currently headed for a hearing at the Ninth Cicuit Federal Appeals Court.

Healdsburg to appeal wastewater decision
Issue could end up before U.S. Supreme Court

February 25 / By Ray Holley / Healdsburg Tribune Editor

9th Circuit Affirmed Our Lower Court Victory!

For those of you who have been following our Healdsburg case the 9th Circuit Thursday affirmed our lower court victory. This case is the first from any Federal Circuit after the recent Supreme Court Rapanos wetland decision in July. The unanimous decision was written by the Chief Justice of the Ninth Circuit and sets significant precedence regarding the protection of adjacent wetlands.

click here for the decision in PDF format.

Victory for the Russian River!
United States Federal District Court Judge rules in favor of River Watch in our case against the City of Healdsburg.

click here to read the Court's Decision
click here to Download Court Decision in PDF Format

Healdsburg wastewater pond's future use in doubt
Judge says federal permit needed to continue dumping near river

February 5, 2004 / By LORI A. CARTER / THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

Healdsburg loses federal lawsuit over wastewater
US District Court judge demands that city get federal permits for discharge to gravel pit
February 4 / By Ray Holley / Healdsburg Tribune Editor

click here to view the Press Release in PDF Format
click here to view the Press Release in MS Word


Complaint

Notice Letter