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Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has filed a lawsuit against two Stone County developers for allegedly polluting Table Rock Lake.A release from Koster’s office says he has asked the court to issue an order requiring James Shirato of Indian Ridge Resort, Inc., and Donald Snider of North Shore investments, LLC, to comply with Missouri’s clean water law. KSMU’s Ryan Welch has this report.
Koster says that the development known as Indian Ridge Resort, located near Branson West, is in violation of Missouri’s Clean Water Law. According to a press release from the Attorney General’s office, the $1.6 billion, 850-acre development broke ground in 2005. It was to include hundreds of homes, an eight-story hotel, water park, golf course, conference center, and retail shopping.
Koster says work stopped in August 2008 when the developers’ bank failed and was taken over by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, or FDIC. Koster says that since then, rainfall has caused residue to be washed into erosion channels, which eventually ended up in Table Rock Lake.
One of the developers was able to take our phone call while he was out at the development site, where crews were working to clean up the sediment.
Jim Shirato is the owner of Indian Ridge Resort, Inc. He said he was very surprised to hear about the lawsuit.
He added that over the last two years, he’s tried to meticulously follow the guidelines of the FDIC and the Environmental Protection Agency.
However, he said it put him in a tough spot when the FDIC didn’t fund the development for awhile, and the EPA said the developers still had to perform erosion control on the site.
Recently, however, the FDIC gave the developers approval to clean up the site.
“We’re doing it, and if you ask me what’s going to happen, I can tell you we’re going to continue the remediation plan as approved by EPA,” said Shirato.
That “remediation plan” that Shirato’s referring to is to reverse any environmental damage that has occurred in the last two years. That work is being done with the Department of Natural Resources.
For KSMU News, I’m Ryan Welch.