COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Columbia officials say the federal government plans to order the city to pay $1.5 million in fines and cleanup costs for sewage spills.
The State newspaper reported the order comes after a 4-year investigation.
The city is being fined nearly $500 million. The city also must spend $1 million to deal with flooding and to clean parts of 3 streams flowing into Columbia rivers.
The proposed agreement sets deadline for improvements and could result in further penalties if the improvements are not made as directed.
The city has plans to improve its sewer system.
The city has up to two years to develop plans for the improvements and to start work on them.
Columbia has been criticized for using money from its water and sewer fund for unrelated projects.
Information from: The State, http://www.thestate.comCopyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.