It's like deja vu all over again.
Envirocare of Utah said it has resubmitted engineering drawings and documents to the Utah Department of Environmental Quality for approval.The drawings and documents had to be recertified by professional engineers who are licensed by the state before DEQ would renew Envirocare's low-level radioactive materials permit. Applications for permit modifications were also put on hold.
The delays were the result of state regulators discovering that Envirocare's director of engineering, Alan A. Bargerstock, was not licensed with the state.
"Everything was ready to be approved until Bargerstock's license was found to be fraudulent," said DEQ spokeswoman Carol Sisco.
Bargerstock, who is no longer employed by Envirocare, worked for the company for 18 months before the discovery was made. He was one of 10 engineers working at Envirocare and had responsibilities for producing technical drawings of facilities and cells used to store radioactive waste.
Under its current license, Envirocare continues to operate one of three landfills in the country that handles low-level radioactive waste, such as contaminated dirt, from environmental cleanup sites. There is no expiration date of the current permit as long as the license renewal process has been initiated.
Envirocare spokeswoman Kim DeMille said most of the drawings for the storage facility were done by outside sources. But it was Bargerstock who passed them off with what DeMille said was a fraudulent professional engineer's stamp and license number he provided at the time of his hiring.
"The most serious thing found when we had the documents recertified was a few typos but nothing too major," DeMille said.
Sisco said that while most of the documents for Envirocare's license renewal have been received by DEQ, officials are still waiting on some other documents.
Depending on the results of the review, environmental regulators say they'll be considering a number of fines against Envirocare. The Division of Radiation Control is looking at fines of $5,000 per violation, and the Division of Water Quality is looking at civil penalities of $10,000 per violation. The Division of Solid and Hazardous Waste is considering fines of $10,000 per day.
The Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing, whose employees discovered Bargerstock's lack of a license, has also turned over fraud allegations against him to Chief Deputy Reed Richards of the Utah Attorney General's Office. He will assign the case to his criminal screening committee for consideration of possible criminal prosecution.
Once all the required documentation has been received, DEQ will review the documents with a fine-toothed comb.
"Once all of the documentation is received, we'll have to thoroughly review it to make sure it's completely accurate," Sisco said.
Envirocare president Charles Judd said he is anxious to get the license-renewal process under way again.