LITTLE ROCK — The state pollution control department will investigate claims that Central Arkansas’ regional water company has ignored environmental safety requirements while working around its primary water source, the agency’s director said Friday.
Teresa Marks, director of the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, commented after a resident who lives near Lake Maumelle complained to the state Pollution Control and Ecology Commission that Central Arkansas Water workers left trash, empty oil and fuel containers and other debris around a water tower and pump station under construction.
The pump station and water tower are part of a project, more than six miles long, which will provide water to the Wye Mountain area west of Little Rock. CAW is managing construction of the project.
"For someone who is supposed to be the leader in water quality, they are not following the rules they put into place," Lori White told the commission, noting that CAW was issued seven citations earlier this year for erosion problems in the same area.
Lake Maumelle, in western Pulaski County, is the drinking water source for Little Rock, North Little Rock and other Central Arkansas municipalities.
Graham Rich, CAW’s chief executive, said later Friday that he was aware of White’s complaints and that they would be addressed.
Rich said the seven violations from earlier this year have been corrected.
"There have been some issues with the contract that we are trying to work through," Rich said. "There have been some deficiencies on our part and we are working to get those corrected."
He said appreciated the "heightened level of interest from Miss White and other people. It certainly holds us to a higher standard and it’s going to make us work harder."