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Monday, December 9, 2019

Vt. dairy farm admits to violating agriculture, pollution laws

By Mark Payne | Jan 9, 2015

Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell | Vermont Attorney General's Office

Nelson Farms, Inc. recently reached a settlement with Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell over allegations that it violated state agricultural and water pollution laws. 

Nelson Farms operates dairy farms in Derby Line and Derby, Vermont. 

As part of the settlement with the state, Nelson Farms admitted that the farms violated accepted agricultural practices as well as farm operation permits by allowing discharges into state waterways in 2013. 

My office is committed to bringing enforcement actions when necessary to remedy violations of Vermont’s agricultural water quality laws,” Sorrell said. “We know that most Vermont farmers want to run sustainable farms that operate within the law and live up to the expectations of Vermonters, but when farms fail to do so, we are ready to step in.”

In addition to $45,000 in fines, Nelson Farms must employ a professional engineer to certify all future work.

“This type of conduct by Nelson Farms degrades the water quality in Vermont’s streams, rivers, ponds and lakes hurting all Vermonters,” Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner David Mears said. “If we are to improve our water quality as the citizens of Vermont are demanding, these types of violations must stop. I hope the message is clear that the state will pursue significant penalties against those who continue to violate the law in this manner.”

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Vermont Office of the Attorney General