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Baldwin Builders v. Coast Plastering Corporation
Ron Lauter represented Coast Plastering, and successfully won this appeal which established new law in California that where a contractual provision separately provides for the recovery of attorneys' fees incurred...
Karas v. Miller
Stemming from his expertise as a construction defect and business dispute attorney, Mr. Campbell was asked to defend his client, an established homeowner's association law firm, against claims of fraud, misrepresentation...
Defina v. Gosch Automotive
Partner Ron Lauter represented an automotive company in a wrongful termination claim in which plaintiff alleged he was fired because of a perceived disability arising out of a heart conditions.
Nationwide Mutual Insurance v. Evans
This is a multi-million dollar liability claim involving the 2002 "Gavalin Fire" in San Diego County. Approximately 40 residences were destroyed or damaged in a brush fire that was allegedly started because of...
Bonner v. Rotec Industries
Partner represented an industrial machinery manufacturer who designed and built large "rock hoppers" used for conveying large amounts of rock and gravel to construction and landscaping sites.
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California Mercury Mine Could Join Superfund List for Environmental Cleanup

After operating continuously for over a century, the New Idria mercury mine in southern San Benito County closed in 1972 amidst concerns over contaminating runoff and the prohibitive costs of environmental cleanup efforts. Today, mercury pollution from the mine continues to overflow into nearby rivers and streams, possibly even reaching the San Francisco Bay.

Local officials have had substantial difficulty in identifying just who currently owns the New Idria land, causing significant delays in cleanup. However, the Environmental Protection Agency ("EPA") is now considering adding the site to its National Priorities List. The addition of a site like New Idria to the list makes related cleanup efforts eligible for monetary support from the Superfund environmental program.

The Superfund Program

After a series of expensive toxic waste site cleanups in the 70s, a law was created that empowers the EPA to clean up hazardous waste sites and to force parties responsible for pollution to contribute to or pay for government efforts.

Under what is commonly known as the Superfund Program, a tax on chemical and petroleum businesses generates revenue for a trust fund that is dedicated to cleaning up abandoned land containing hazardous material.

In addition to providing for cleanup of abandoned sites, Superfund established a system for finding and holding liable parties responsible for environmental damage. And, even if those responsible for hazardous pollution are readily identifiable, when they fail to act expeditiously, Superfund allows the EPA to step in, take immediate action, and compel polluters to foot the bill.

Forcing Polluters to Pay

Unfortunately, Superfund's monetary resources are limited: New Idria and sites like it only become eligible for cleanup if extensive studies deem them a priority.

If you have been harmed by pollution on your land or adjacent properties, you do not have to wait for governmental action. Speaking with an experienced environmental law attorney I recommended. Your attorney can advise you on possible recourses against polluters.

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