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Dyecraftsmen, Inc. v. EPA

Citation: 6 ELR 20605
No. No. 75-1446, (1st Cir., 07/13/1976)

The court affirms the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) denial of a hearing in conjunction with the reversal of an NPDES permit issued jointly by EPA and the Massachusetts Water Resources Council under § 402 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972, 33 U.S.C. § 1342 and chapter 21, § 43, Massachusetts General Laws. The court holds that there are no "material issues of fact" concerning the permit, which allows discharges into the Mill River, to be resolved at such a hearing. The Regional Administrator of EPA cannot resolve the propriety of local user charges for a possible hookup between the permit applicant and a local sewage system, and in any case granting a delay on economic grounds when compliance with effluent limitations established under the FWPCA is technologically feasible would violate the policy of that Act. Moreover, the negotiations over hookups to the sewage system of the city of Taunton had long been underway, and delay only for the purpose of allowing Dyecraftsmen to obtain a better bargain from the city does not constitute a "material issue of fact relevant [to permit issuance]" for which a hearing is necessary under 40 C.F.R. § 125.36(c)(ii).

The full text of this opinion is available from ELR (7 pp. $1.00, ELR Order No. C-1067).

Counsel for Plaintiff
Morris M. Goldings
Mahoney, Hawkes & Goldings
500 Boylston St.
Boston MA 02116
(617) 261-2300

Counsel for Federal Defendants
Peter R. Taft, Asst. Attorney General
Charles W. Shipley
Alfred R. Ghiorzi
Department of Justice
Washington DC 20530
(202) 737-8200

Robert V. Zener, General Counsel
Environmental Protection Agency
Washington DC 20460
(202) 755-2511

Campbell, J., for himself, McEntee, J., and Coffin, C.J.

[OPINION OMITTED BY PUBLISHER IN ORIGINAL SOURCE]