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The Department of Environmental Quality says Northside Rock Products LLC threatened fish habitat.

A North Plains-area quarry has been fined for the second time over the discharge of pollutants into McKay Creek, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality said.

Northside Rock Products LLC, which operates a quarry at 18240 N.W. Dixie Mountain Road north of North Plains, was slapped with a $117,600 penalty, the DEQ announced Thursday, Feb. 22.

Illegal discharge of pollution from the Peterson Quarry gravel mine allegedly continued after the DEQ levied a $55,048 fine against the company last July.

The DEQ said an inspector and a state trooper saw "opaque, milky brown runoff from the mine entering the creek" in October and November. Sampling found the water was nearly 3,000 times the degree of turbidity, or cloudiness, allowed for industrial discharge under Oregon law, according to the department.

McKay Creek is a designated spawning area for salmon and steelhead.

Northside Rock allegedly discharged pollution from the quarry into the East Fork of McKay Creek.

The DEQ said Northside Rock reported that it sealed the pond from which the pollution was being discharged into the creek, after the department ordered it to immediately stop the pollution in November.

A call to Northside Rock requesting comment Thursday afternoon was not immediately returned.

By Mark Miller
Editor, Forest Grove News-Times
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