Shakedown stories from July 2015
Big Sky Energy : $0
If you are wondering why a $0 fine is on this list it is because this is a court ruling that was overturned that originally was a $492,800 fine. This make the list because of the outrageous nature of the original fine.
Big Sky Energy was found guilty in court of destroying wetlands but the problem is they were not informed of the trial. That's correct. Put on trial without a chance to defend themselves. Thank goodness this was overturned. Some government officials need to be put on trial for the original trial.
Ronald Foster : $400,000
Filled in a ditch. EPA claims it was a creek because two hills come together and collect water.
Stacey's Brook : $65,000
The fine is for contamination from the sewer system mingling with the storm drainage system. Bacteria has been found in the drainage water which empties on King's Beach.
This system, though, has been estimated to be 80 to 130 years old. So this system was created long before the EPA or regulations were created. There was no active violation of the regulations.
In addition no one knows where the contamination is happening and finding it has been likened to finding a needle in a haystack. So basically the bacteria has been blamed on the sewer system even though there is no direct proof. Could there be another source?
It has been suggested to use chlorine to treat the water to kill the bacteria but the EPA has struck down this proposal claiming that was every bit as bad as the original contamination.
Stacey's Brook and eventually the town of Swampscott have to upgrade their drainage and sewer systems.
Foster Poultry Farms : $112,500
Failed to meet the federal deadline for reporting significant quantities of chemicals stored at its facility in 2013. Carbon dioxide was one of the chemicals necessary to report.
Yup. Fined for slow paper work. Proper paper work was received.
Shining Ocean, Inc. : $16,575
Failed to meet the federal deadline for reporting significant quantities of chemicals stored at its facility from 2009 - 2013.
Yup. Another fine for slow paper work.
Wilcox Farms, Inc. : $15,625
Failed to meet the federal deadline for reporting significant quantities of chemicals stored at its facility in 2013.
Yup. Another fine for slow paper work. Proper paper work was received.
Navistar : $300,000,000
This is a currently unsettled case.
EPA claims Navistar used engines made in 2010 that did not conform to 2010 EPA emissions standards. Navistar claims it produced the engines if 2009 and put them in 2010 vehicles.
Even crazier is that the EPA claims Navistar did not follow procedures to get "transitory" exemptions to use the engines.
If the engine is made 2009 it is fine, but it is a crime if made in 2010. And I am unclear on the "transitory" exemption, but it sounds like if the engines were made in 2010 they would be legal if they filled out the correct paperwork, and probably payed for the exemption.