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WZTV - Search Results

The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Groups Accuse Three Sewage Plants of Polluting the Harpeth --- Sky Arnold

Stream Fox 17 newscasts LIVE starting with Fox 17 This Morning at 5 am and News at 9 pm.

Franklin, Tenn ----Even when the Harpeth River is empty Dorene Bolze sees something priceless.

"It's everybody's wilderness spot right behind their back yard," said Bolze.

The problem according to Bolze's organization the Harpeth River Watershed Association, is that sometimes the river is 90% treated waste water.

It's why her group and the Southern Environmental Law Center sent out letters to three sewage treatment plants along the river including The City of Franklin Sewage Treatment Plant, Berry's Chapel Utility Sewage Treatment Plant, and Cartwright Creek LLC-Grasslands Sewage Treatment Plant.

The letters detail nearly 1500 violations over the last five years including ammonia discharges in Franklin in June 2010, January 2012, October 2012 and June 2013.

 "We really have got to get these facilities to meet their permits.  We really do," said Bolze.

Bolze says if changes aren't made the groups plan to take their case to federal court.

Franklin's City Manager says many of the violations are the result of things out of his facility's control or someone else dumping into the system.

"We work very hard to be in compliance the vast majority of time we are," said Eric Stucky.

Stucky says his office is still investigating to see if all 15 hundred violations cited in the letters are real.

He says the key thing for the public to remember is that the state did not cite Franklin for any of those violations.

"In that same 5 year period there have been no enforcement actions on us where they have identified very serious errors or fined us or done anything of that nature," said Stucky.

Still Bolze sees real problems in the data she believes could put the wilderness spot in danger.
   
"You can get fish kills if it get's severe but the bottom line the river doesn't meet standards," said Bolze.