Dennis Ferreira, a former superintendent of Barletta Heavy Division Inc., a unit of privately-held Barletta Cos., Canton, Mass., has been suspended from participating in all federally-funded programs and projects, according to a recent U.S. Dept. of Transportation Office of Inspector General statement.
Ferreira and Barletta pleaded not guilty in February in Providence County Superior Court in Rhode Island to two counts of illegal disposal of solid waste, one count of operating a solid waste management facility without a license and one count of providing a false document to a public official. The firm was lead contractor of the design-build joint venture awarded a $246.7-million contract for the Route 6/10 highway interchange project in Providence. They allegedly illegally dumped thousands of tons of contaminated fill on the $410 million project starting in July 2020.
“The [DOT OIG] investigation revealed that in July 2020, Ferreira falsely reported to the Rhode Island Dept. of Transportation and the [Federal Highway Administration] the origin of railroad ballast and dirt imported for the 6/10 interchange project in Providence, R.I.,” the statement says. Ferreira was “also responsible for a report Barletta submitted to [the state DOT] stating that stone used in the project had been tested and met environmental criteria when, in fact, it had not,” it adds.
Barletta has agreed to pay a total of $1.5 million in fines to the federal government, according to U.S. Attorney Zacchary Cunha.
This latest development in Barletta’s alleged illegal contaminated fill dumping charges follows Ferreira’s guilty plea on Sept 15, 2022 in U.S. District Court in Providence to three counts of making false statements regarding the federally funded Route 6/10 project. He faces up to 15 years in prison and a $750,000 fine.
Reached by phone, Ferreira attorney Kevin Bristow says his March 16 sentencing hearing was postponed and he awaits a new date. “My client chooses not to speak,” he says. John G. Bulman, Barletta’s in-house attorney, did not respond to requests for comment from ENR.
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