Conn. AG announces judgment against dairy manufacturer

Bryan Cohen Jan. 16, 2012, 1:41pm


HARTFORD, Conn. (Legal Newsline) - Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen and state Department of Energy Commissioner Daniel Etsy have announced a judgment resolving a lawsuit against a Newington dairy manufacturer that allegedly made wastewater discharge violations.

The stipulated judgment announced Friday requires that Kohler Mix Specialties LLC, a Delaware company registered to do business in Connecticut, must pay the state a civil penalty of $299,999. The judgment was agreed to by the state and approved in Hartford Superior Court on Wednesday.

"This is a good result," Jepsen said. "It is fair to the company and achieves the state's goal. The magnitude of the penalty will serve to ensure compliance with the law and deter sources of pollution that affect water quality."

A total of $100,000 of the civil penalty will be used for an environmental protection project that will be proposed for the town of Newington. The judgment also imposes a permanent injunction upon Kohler, prohibiting the company from violating its wastewater discharge permit in addition to state laws and regulations regarding water pollution.

"I applaud the efforts of DEEP staff to bring these violations to light and the work of the attorney general's office to secure an appropriate settlement of this case," Etsy said. "We are also pleased that a portion of the penalties will be used by the town of Newington to advance Low Impact Development techniques, which help reduce the volume and impact of storm water runoff."

Etsy alleged that on multiple occasions and in violation of a state-issued permit, Kohler bypassed its equipment for wastewater collection and treatment and manually overrode the facility's pH and other alarm equipment. This allegedly resulted in the discharge of untreated wastewater created by the food manufacturing process into a sanitary sewage system and a nearby stream.

Under the terms of the judgment, Kohler must submit a comprehensive report to DEEP that details all of the operational and facility improvements that the company has made to its wastewater collection and treatment system.

The company must also note its compliance with the discharge permit and applicable water pollution regulations and laws. The report, which must be filed within 60 days, must cover January 2008 to the present.

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