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(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, any user who violates or continues to violate any provision of the Sewer Use Ordinance, Chapter 932 of the Codified Ordinances of the City of Elyria, Ohio, as amended, or any order issued by the Water Pollution Control Board, or any wastewater discharge permit shall be liable to the Water Pollution Control Board for a civil penalty of not more than twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000), plus actual damages incurred by the POTW for each violation. In addition to the above described penalty and damages, the Board may recover reasonable attorneys fees, court costs and other expenses associated with the enforcement activities, including sampling and monitoring expenses.
The Board shall, through appropriate officials, petition the Court of Common Pleas to impose, assess and recover such funds. In determining the amount of liability the Court shall take into account all relevant circumstances, including the following factors:
(1) Potential for harm from the discharge or violation;
(2) The seriousness and extent of the violation;
(3) The violator's good faith efforts to comply;
(4) The degree of cooperation or lack of cooperation by the violator;
(5) The violator's actual knowledge of the violation or degree of negligence or willfulness;
(6) The violator's history of compliance or noncompliance;
(7) The violator's financial circumstances; and
(8) Any other unique factors specific to the violator or the case (including the strength of the case and competing policy concerns).
(b) Any person who violates any provision of this chapter, or of any permit or order issued hereunder, is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree and shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000) or imprisoned not more than six months, or both, for each offense. A separate offense shall be deemed committed each day during or on which a violation occurs or continues.
(c) Whenever the City has determined that a user has failed to comply with any provision of the Sewer Use Ordinance, any wastewater discharge permit, a Notice of Violation, a Notice of Complaint, or an order issued by the City, the City may cause to be instituted, through appropriate officials, judicial proceedings for appropriate relief.
(d) Whenever an industrial user violates or continues to violate any provisions of the Sewer Use Ordinance, any wastewater discharge permit or any order issued by the City, the City may terminate the water service to the user and water service will only recommence, at the user's expense, after it has satisfactorily demonstrated its ability to comply with the rules and regulations of this chapter and of the Pretreatment Program.
(e) Any user who willfully or negligently violates any provision of the Sewer Use Ordinance, any wastewater discharge permit, Notice of Violation, Notice of Complaint, or any order issued by the City, shall, upon conviction, be guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree and be subject to a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000) or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both, for each offense, except, however, an organization may be fined not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) for each offense. A separate offense shall be deemed committed each day during or on which a violation occurs or continues.
(f) The Water Pollution Control Board is hereby authorized to pay up to five hundred dollars ($500.00) for information leading to the discovery of noncompliance by an industrial user. In the event that the information provided results in an administrative fine or civil penalty levied against the user, the Board is authorized to disperse up to ten percent of the collected fine or penalty to the informant. However, a single reward payment may not exceed ten thousand dollars ($10,000).
(Ord. 2002-46. Passed 3-4-02.)