Community Environment

Developer, Department of Ecology agree to lower fine for water quality violations at Gig Harbor site

Posted on May 3rd, 2024 By:

The Washington Department of Ecology announced that Puyallup-based RMHomes agreed to pay a reduced $40,000 penalty for water quality violations at a construction site in Gig Harbor.

The settlement agreement reduces the original penalty of $56,000.

According to Ecology, state and local inspectors noted 15 water quality violations at the Edwards Drive construction site in 2023. They included failing to install sediment controls, stabilize soils, protect drain inlets and more.

RM plans to build 14 new homes on about 4.5 acres of undeveloped land on Edwards between Pioneer Way and Stinson Avenue. The builder calls the development Hillstad.

RM owner Ryan McGowan told Gig Harbor Now in August 2023 that the company “did everything humanly possible” to control erosion and runoff at the site. The company appealed the original $56,000 penalty, resulting in the settlement.

Ecology said the fine goes to the state’s Coastal Protection Fund, which provides grants to public agencies and tribes for water quality restoration.

Stormwater runoff from construction sites can carry muddy water, debris and chemicals into local waterways. Sediments, chemicals and debris can harm aquatic life and reduce water quality.

RM Homes of Puyallup plans to build 14 luxury homes in this development off Edwards Drive in Gig Harbor.