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Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Chemical Maker To Pay $950,000 Fine Over Clean Air Act Violations

KANSAS CITY, Kan. - A Kansas City, Kan.-based chemical manufacturer on July 31 entered into an agreement with the government in Kansas federal court in which the company agreed to pay a $950,000 civil penalty and remedy its risk management program to resolve allegations that it violated the Clean Air...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - EPA to Forgive $20.7M Debt Owed by Flint, Mich., For Water Crisis Response

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Aug. 1 issued a press release in which it said it would forgive $20.7 million in debt that the city of Flint, Mich., owes the agency related to the response to the lead-contaminated water crisis in that city.

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Remands Washington's Suit Against Monsanto Over PCB Contamination

SEATTLE - A federal judge in Washington on July 28 granted the state's motion to remand a suit against Monsanto Co. over polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) contamination in the state's water, land and wildlife, rejecting the company's argument that it manufactured the chemicals at the request...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 16 Attorneys General Sue EPA Over Delay In Clean Air Standards

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The attorneys general for 15 states and the District of Columbia on Aug. 1 filed a petition for review in the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, contending that the court should review the final action of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that extended the deadline...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Orders Insurer To Produce Documents To Reinsurer In Breach Of Contract Suit

PHILADELPHIA - In a breach of contract suit over asbestos insurance claims, a Pennsylvania federal judge on Aug. 1 ordered an insurer to produce to a reinsurer original, unredacted versions of documents concerning proprietary information, historical loss reserves and information related to other reinsurance...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - South Carolina Jury Awards $300,000 To Worker, Wife In Power Plant Asbestos Trial

SPARTANBURG, S.C. - A South Carolina state court jury on Aug. 3 awarded $300,000 to a former power plant inspector and his wife after finding that two defendants negligently exposed the worker to asbestos that caused his mesothelioma (Beverly Dale Jolly, et al. v. General Electric Company, et al., No...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Groups Debate Whether D.C. Circuit Court Can Hear EPA Methane Rule Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Petroleum industry groups filed a brief on Aug. 3 in the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, contending that the court lacks jurisdiction to review the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's decision to grant administrative reconsideration of the agency's rule...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge: City's Operation Of Wastewater Treatment Site Triggers CERCLA Liability

HOUSTON - A federal judge in Texas on Aug. 2 denied a motion by the city of Pasadena, Texas, for partial summary judgment, finding that it could face liability under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) because it owned a wastewater treatment plant for 50...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Mich. Appeals Panel Remands Tobacco Product Seizure Suit For Further Proceedings

DETROIT - A panel of the Michigan Court of Appeals on Aug. 1 reversed summary disposition for a tobacco seller and remanded the suit over the forfeiture and seizure of tobacco products to the trial court to determine if the forfeiture was proper (Value, Inc. v. Department of Treasury, No. 331581, Mich...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Pipeline Owner Can Seek Contribution Under Oil Pollution Act, Judge Rules

SALT LAKE CITY - The owner of a pipeline that leaked crude oil after it was struck by an electrical arc from another company's transition station can seek contribution under the Oil Pollution Act (OPA) for approximately $30 million in costs it incurred in remediating the spill, a federal judge in...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Stays Cities' Suits Against Monsanto To Exhaust Administrative Remedies

SAN JOSE, Calif. - A federal judge in California on Aug. 4 stayed three lawsuits filed by cities seeking to recover damages from Monsanto Co., Solutia Inc. and Pharmacia Corp. for increased costs the cities have incurred to maintain compliance with permits for discharges of stormwater containing polychlorinated...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 9th Circuit Again Finds Fault In Expert Witness Rulings In Water Contamination Row

PASADENA, Calif. - A federal trial court abused its discretion twice when making two expert witness decisions against a California city, and the errors were prejudicial to the city in its claims that its groundwater was polluted by a chemical in a company's fertilizer products, the Ninth Circuit...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Denies Salvage Yard's Motion To Dismiss Group's Clean Water Act Suit

BOSTON - A federal judge in Massachusetts on Aug. 7 denied a salvage yard's motion to dismiss a suit brought by an environmental group accusing it of violating the Clean Water Act (CWA), ruling that the group has jurisdictional standing and that its allegations were sufficient (Clean Water Action...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Dismissal Denied For Tobacco Product Distributor In Trademark Infringement Suit

CHICAGO - A federal judge in Illinois on Aug. 7 denied a motion to dismiss brought by a counterdefendant in a tobacco product trademark infringement suit after finding that the court had jurisdiction over the counterclaims because the counterdefendant, which is based in California, has done business...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Asbestos Defendants Seek New Discovery Master Due To Apparent Conflicts

NEWARK, N.J. - Defendants in a seven-year-old asbestos lawsuit on Aug. 8 asked a New Jersey federal judge to replace a special discovery master due to conflict of interest from his past and current law firm associations (Kimberlee Williams, et al. v. BASF Catalysts LLC., et al., No. 11-1754, D. N.J....

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Dismisses Defamation, Whistleblower Case Brought Flint, Mich., City Employee

DETROIT - A federal judge in Michigan on Aug. 9 dismissed a lawsuit brought by a former administrator for the city of Flint, Mich., who sought damages for defamation and sought protection under the state's whistleblower act in relation to actions she took during the Flint lead-contaminated water...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - En Banc D.C. Circuit Will Not Rehear Methane Rule Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The en banc District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Aug. 10 refused to grant a petition for rehearing en banc sought by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that challenged a split panel decision that found that the EPA did not have the authority to stay the agency's...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Oklahoma Supreme Court Finds New Tobacco Tax Unconstitutional

OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma Supreme Court on Aug. 10 found that a tobacco tax labeled as a "smoking cessation fee" is a revenue-raising tax because the money generated from it is being used to balance the state's budget and, therefore, that it should be stricken in its entirety (James...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Michigan Residents Sue Ford Motor Company, Allege Groundwater Contamination

DETROIT - A group of Michigan residents on Aug. 8 filed a class action against Ford Motor Co. in Michigan state court contending that the company is liable for groundwater contamination as a result of leaking "highly toxic chemicals" from its facility in Livonia, Mich. (Bruce Tenniswood, et...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Roundup MDL Judge: Firm Must To Show Cause Why It Should Not Be Sanctioned

SAN FRANCISCO - The federal judge presiding over the multidistrict litigation for Roundup, the herbicide manufactured by Monsanto Co. that contains glyphosate, on Aug. 9 ordered plaintiffs' counsel to show cause why it should not be removed from the case or otherwise sanctioned monetarily in connection...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - South Dakota Federal Judge Denies Motion To Amend Religious Tobacco Use Order

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - A federal judge in South Dakota on Aug. 9 denied a motion brought by a group of plaintiffs seeking to increase the amount of tobacco used in a religious mixture for Native American religious ceremonies in prison after finding that the amount the court already allowed was sufficient...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Asbestos Discovery Master Says Alleged Conflicts Don't Warrant Disqualification

NEWARK, N.J. - The special master appointed to oversee discovery issues in a seven-year-old asbestos lawsuit involving allegations of fraud on the part of a talc defendant and its lawyer said in an Aug. 11 letter that a law firm's representation of an unrelated party does not disqualify him from...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 9th Circuit Overturns Ruling Finding ASARCO's Cleanup Contribution Suit Untimely

SEATTLE - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Aug. 10 reversed a federal judge in Montana's ruling that a contribution lawsuit brought under Section 113(f) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act was barred by the statute of limitations, holding that...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Fabric Maker's Request To Appeal Denial Of Dismissal Motion Rejected By Judge

MACON, Ga. - An interlocutory appeal of an order denying a protective fabric maker's motion to dismiss a suit accusing it of violating the Clean Water Act (CWA) would not ultimately advance the litigation, a federal judge in Georgia ruled Aug. 15, finding that discovery is needed to determine if...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Insurer Seeks Clarification On Discovery To Reinsurer In Breach Of Contract Suit

PHILADELPHIA - In a breach of contract suit, an insurer moved for clarification on Aug. 11 with a Pennsylvania federal court to confirm that it is to produce only unredacted versions of documents previously produced with redactions based on proprietary material, reserves and "other reinsurance"...