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RACINE - The Wisconsin Department of Justice has filed and settled a lawsuit against Racine County well driller Kenneth J. Krizan for violations of state well construction regulations, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced today.
Wisconsin's well construction regulations establish minimum standards designed to protect groundwater and aquifers from contamination through improper location and through inadequate construction and reconstruction of water systems. The well code requires licensed well drillers to maintain a current license, to comply with the construction standards, to promptly sample for bacteria and to provide reports documenting well construction to the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). State statutes set penalties for noncompliance.
According to the civil complaint filed at the request of the DNR and pursuant to an appointment by Racine County District Attorney Michael E. Nieskes, Krizan failed to properly construct and abandon wells in Racine County, constructed wells after his license had expired and before it was renewed, and failed to file timely water sample reports and well construction reports. The alleged violations occurred since 2003.
Mr. Krizan cooperated with the Department of Justice and the DNR to provide outstanding well construction and water sample reports. In addition to paying $40,000 in forfeitures, fees and costs, Mr. Krizan has agreed to offer to abandon an improperly located well at his own expense, and to notify the DNR prior to drilling wells during the next two years.
In announcing the settlement, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen stressed the need for the drillers of water wells of Wisconsin to obey the law. "The Department of Justice will continue to work with the Department of Natural Resources and local District Attorneys to insure compliance with environmental laws," Van Hollen said.
Racine County Circuit Court Judge Richard J. Kreul approved the parties' settlement agreement. Assistant Attorney General Diane Milligan represented the State.