Representatives from CalPortland Cement Company reached an agreement late last month with federal regulators.

The company owns a manufacturing facility near Interstate 10 and Avra Valley Road that was found to have been operating for several years out of compliance with federal Clean Air Act regulations. CalPortland agreed to pay $350,000 in fines in connection with the violations.

"We're glad to get the matter behind us and move on," said Scott Isaacson, CalPortland vice president.

The company employs 136 people at the Northwest manufacturing plant. The Explorer reported on the settlement last week, but was unable to speak with a CalPortland representative before the publication deadline.

The violations were not connected to air quality issues, but rather to a failure to obtain federal permits following an expansion project in 1998.

Isaacson said a consultant the company hired to complete a federal application made math errors that resulted in the company miscalculating the rate of particulate emissions the factory produced.

The company paid previous fines in 2006 to the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality in connection with state air quality issues. Isaacson said the 2006 violations had to do with the quality of manufacturing material the company received.

"Raw materials came in that had materials in it that weren't revealed to us," he said.

CalPortland paid $300,000 in fines and was required to meet a list of requirements as part of the settlement.

Those included to conduct annual tests to monitor emissions, assess the raw materials used in the manufacturing process to protect against future violations, to improve air quality in the neighboring community by applying dust suppressants to an unpaved road, to install a heating, cooling and ventilation system and air purifiers in a Rillito Community Center, and to offer air purifiers to local Rillito residents.

ADEQ confirmed that the company has met the requirements.

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