MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) announced today that on June 10, 2022, Steven R. Sharpe of Waterford, Wisconsin, was sentenced to pay a monetary penalty of $39,531.00, and prohibited from submitting storm water permitting documents to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources for a period of three years. A jury found Sharpe guilty of failing to obtain a storm water permit, failing to develop a storm water management plan, and failing to inspect storm water best management practices (BMPs) after a trial on May 16-18, 2022, before Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge Kristy Yang. Sharpe also pled no contest to a violation alleging that he failed to implement and maintain storm water BMPs at a City of Milwaukee construction site.
“The Department of Justice is committed to taking environmental violations to trial when necessary to protect the environment and achieve a just result,” said Attorney General Josh Kaul. “Thank you to DNR and DOJ, whose diligent work led to this victory for our environment.”
Evidence presented at trial from two DNR storm water experts established that Sharpe was an operator at a construction site in the City of Milwaukee. Despite having an agreement to bring the site into compliance with state storm water laws, Sharpe failed to obtain a permit and otherwise prevent the runoff of pollutants from the site to nearby waterways.
The case was tried by Wisconsin Department of Justice Assistant Attorneys General Tressie Kamp and Bradley Motl, with assistance from paralegal LaVina Melby and legal associate Carly Henry. In addition to DNR witnesses, multiple legal and enforcement staff at DNR were instrumental to obtaining this jury verdict.
View the press release here.