I-90 bridge deck above Cle Elum River 

Credit: Google Maps

CLE ELUM - The Department of Ecology says a construction company out of Spokane has a hefty fine to pay after an unauthorized dumping of wastewater in a Kittitas County river in May.

Kuney Construction of Spokane was penalized $43,000 on May 14 for illegally discharging sediment and high pH wastewater to the Cle Elum River on three separate occasions; the dumping violates water quality laws. In addition, Ecology officials say the company failed to follow its Construction Stormwater General Permit while working on an I-90 bridge deck project.

Kuney is being held responsible for discharging process water containing high pH concrete slurry on Nov. 3, 2020, and Dec. 23, 2020, to the Cle Elum River, and fined $10,000 for each day. Kuney is also subject to a $13,000 penalty for failing to implement best management practices as required under the construction stormwater permit the company held at the 7-acre site, including where the freeway crosses the Cle Elum River.

Also, the subcontractor on the Kuney Construction project, KLB Construction of Mukeltio, has been fined $10,000 for discharging turbid water into the Cle Elum River while working on the same I-90 project.