Grease trap requirement to be enforced

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By Kellie Parkin

All Cedar Key restaurants are required to have working grease traps, and now the Cedar Key Water and Sewer District is going to enforce that rule.

The District Board voted unanimously Monday night to send a letter to all restaurant owners, as well as landlords if applicable, informing them that they have 30 days to meet the grease trap requirement, or their water will be shut off. District staff will inspect each restaurant to ensure compliance.

The move comes after last week’s unlawful dumping of 10-40 gallons of grease in the Cedar Key sewer system, causing the District to divert the treated effluent into the bay.

Because the water is treated and only being diverted for a short period of time, a smaller area of the bay than protocol normally calls for was closed – approximately three to four times the size of the regular prohibited area surrounding the District’s release site on 3rd Street, according to Mark DeHaven with the Division of Aquaculture.

None of the clam leases have been effected, but a couple of oystering areas are closed temporarily, DeHaven said.

“By the end of the week we should be back to normal,” CKWSD General Manager Jack Hotaling said.