July 24, 2008

On July 22, 2008, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) announced its enforcement actions taken in the second quarter of 2008. The MPCA collected a total of nearly $325,000 in civil penalties in the three month period.  Penalties were collected in multiple cases for air quality ($106,971), solid waste ($60,259), stormwater ($51,009), feedlot ($43,167) and penalties for several other types of violations.

In the second quarter of 2008, the MPCA finalized a total of 37 enforcement actions.  In five cases the MPCA and regulated agreed to enter into Stipulation Agreements, contractual agreements to avoid potential litigation, with civil penalties in those settlements ranging from $12,650 for a case involving water quality violations up to $44,500 for a case involving air quality violations.

In the remaining 32 enforcement cases, the MPCA collected penalties of $10,000 or less. In these matters the MPCA unilaterally issued Administrative Penalty Orders (APOs).  A regulated party who receives an APO may choose to pay the penalty as assessed and determined by the MPCA or seek review of the APO before an administrative law judge or before a state district court judge.  Regulated parties who agree to pay the assessed penalty in an APO may face enhanced civil penalties in the event that the MPCA discovers additional alleged violations that are deemed to be “repeat” violations.

See the following press release for a list of all recent MPCA enforcement cases.

http://www.pca.state.mn.us/news/data/newsRelease.cfm?NR=279444&type=2

The environmental lawyers at Hessian & McKasy represent clients who face federal or statement enforcement actions as a result of alleged noncompliance.

The views expressed here are my own and do not reflect the views of my employer, Hessian & McKasy P.A.

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