Feds: Dubuque Campground Project Destroyed Wetland
By Trish Mehaffey, Reporter
DUBUQUE, Iowa - A woman who discharged pollutants into a wetland pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court.
Elaine Kelly, 65, of Dubuque, pleaded guilty to one count of violating the Clean Water Act.
According to a plea agreement, Kelly admitted that from March 2009 through June 2010, while building a campground, she discharged dredged spoil, biological materials, dirt, rock, sand lime, trees, into a wetland adjacent to the Middle Fork of Catfish Creek, a tributary of the Mississippi River, near Dubuque. She also admitted she had been repeatedly instructed to stop her actions in person, over the phone and in writing including a cease and desist letter from the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers.
Kelly had been told by contractors and city, county and state employees that she may be building in a protected wetland, according to the plea agreement. She also didn’t have a permit to discharge the pollutants in the water.
The wetland was destroyed and can’t be fully restored, so additional land will have to be purchased to offset the damaged area, according to the plea agreement.
Kelly faces up three years in federal prison and fine between $5,000 to $50,000 per day of the violation. Sentencing hasn’t been set at this time.
What's On KCRG