Michigan DEQ Settles Lawsuit Involving Drinking Water Violations at Manistee County Resort

The state Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has settled a lawsuit against an Indiana company that owns and operates a drinking water supply at an Onekama Township condominium and resort complex known as Portage Pointe Inn.

The consent judgment entered on Dec. 7 between the DEQ and Northwoods Development LLC resolves allegations involving the continued operation of a Type I public water supply without first meeting the requirements of Michigan's Safe Drinking Water Act. Northwoods Development converted a hotel resort complex into a partial condominium development in the mid-1990s which ultimately created a Type I public water supply subject to additional requirements. The DEQ ordered Northwoods Development to halt additional connections to the system until those additional requirements were met, however after several attempts were made at voluntary compliance, the DEQ filed the complaint.

"The DEQ will continue to ensure that all of Michigan's citizens have access to healthy and sufficient supplies of drinking water and take appropriate action when those requirements are not met," said DEQ Director Steven E. Chester.

In settlement of the litigation, Northwoods Development has agreed to obtain the proper DEQ permit for construction of a new well, make additional system upgrades once the development reaches 50 condominium units, and pay a civil fine of $5,000.

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