Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality hit Recology Oregon Compost with a $5,600 penalty earlier this month for constructing a compost leachate tank at its North Plains facility without DEQ approval.

The environmental agency reported Aug. 6 that construction of the leachate tank before approval violated conditions of a solid waste permit for Recology’s compost facility on Northwest 307th Avenue. DEQ officials said improper construction of a leachate collection and treatment tank could generate odors or possible harmful runoff.

Recology had until Aug. 21 to appeal the penalty.

According to DEQ, the company failed to provide amended design and construction plans for approval before constructing a 67,000-gallon tank designed to hold and treat leachate.

Recology responded to a DEQ pre-enforcement notice by submitting design and construction plans for the tank. DEQ took this action into consideration when determining the amount of civil penalty.

The tank design and construction has since been approved by DEQ. The agency’s June 6 inspection did not find any other violations.

Businesses aid Habitat for Humanity projects

Two local lumber products companies are teaming up with Willamette West Habitat for Humanity to get a Hillsboro project finished. Hampton Affiliates and Forest City Trading Group, LLC are sponsoring a home in Hillsboro’s BraunerBrook development.

Each business is donating funds and work crews, in conjunction with the future homeowners’ required labor hours, to complete the new home.

Both Hampton Affiliates and Forest City Trading Group specialize in building products and each has long-term ties in Oregon. Hampton started in 1942 with the purchase of the Willamina sawmill, and Forest City Trading Group started in 1964 as a small trading company in Portland.

“Many people in the Portland metropolitan area do not realize that wood products are a big part of the urban economy, not just in the rural part of our state. We believe wood is the ultimate local sustainable building product, and we want to demonstrate that we are a sunrise industry at the same time we are helping a very worthy cause,” said Hampton CEO Steve Zika.

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