Josh Kaul will ask Republicans to approve 9 environmental settlements | local government

Democratic Attorney General Josh Kaul is preparing to ask Republican lawmakers next week to sign nearly $400,000 in settlements to solve several pollution cases.

GOP lawmakers passed legislation in 2018 just before Kaul took office that requires the attorney general to seek approval from the Legislative Finance Committee before entering into settlement agreements. Republicans control the committee.

Kaul is expected to present to the committee on Tuesday nine proposed deals that would yield $378,000 in payments to state and local governments. According to state Department of Justice documents, the cases include:

  • A $45,000 settlement with the town of Elkhorn and its waterworks operator, Christopher Robers, for exceeding maximum levels of radium and arsenic in the town’s water system in 2019 and 2018.
  • A $160,000 settlement with United Liquid Waste Recycling, which is accused of failing to report two waste spills, spreading waste in prohibited areas and failing to file timely reports and keep proper records .
  • A $5,000 settlement with United Septic & Drain Services for allegedly failing to keep sludge service records.
  • A $15,000 settlement with Keith Steinmez for allegedly hiring a contractor to fill in 6.5 acres of wetland on his property in Chippewa County.
  • A $65,000 settlement to resolve allegations that Emerald Sky Dairy in St. Croix County failed to properly contain manure in 2019.
  • A $15,000 settlement with Spring South, Tom’s Petroleum Construction and RCT Petroleum for violating underground gas storage tank laws, specifically tampering with leak detection systems, failing to perform tank integrity and failing to report oil releases to the environment.
  • A $25,000 settlement with Dale Randall, Randall Brothers and Jade Excavation and Trucking to resolve allegations that Randall hired Jade to illegally fill in approximately 22.5 acres of wetlands on his Eau Claire County property.
  • A $45,000 settlement with Blue Royal Farm, a factory farm in Reedsville, to resolve allegations of improper feed storage.

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