Ecology levies fines for local firms’ environmental missteps

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Air Quality

WENATCHEE — Some North Central Washington businesses are paying a price for bad environmental practices are paying the price.

The state Department of Ecology says it’s assessed an $8,500 fine against PNW Property Ventures, a real estate development company in East Wenatchee, for illegal burning. The state says the company set fire to  prohibited debris from a demolished structure, including plastics, insulation, roof shingles, rubber hoses, appliances and household garbage.

In Okanogan County, Gebbers Farms carried out agricultural burning last year during a Stage 1 burn ban imposed by the state. Gebbers is one of the largest orchard and cattle operations in the United States; Ecology fined the company $2,500 dollars.

In Soap Lake, the department said, David Ewing must pay $3,000 for burning prohibited materials in an unattended outdoor fire, which brought local fire crews to the scene. It was the fourth recorded instance of an illegal burn at that property.