Attorney General Van Hollen Announces Judgment Requiring Hutchinson Technology, Inc., a Manufacturing Facility in Eau Claire County, to Pay $95,000 in Forfeitures and Costs

Dec 9 2014
Attorney General Van Hollen Announces Judgment Requiring Hutchinson Technology, Inc., a Manufacturing Facility in Eau Claire County, to Pay $95,000 in Forfeitures and Costs

 

MADISON — Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen has announced that his office has obtained a judgment against Hutchinson Technology, Inc., a manufacturing facility in Eau Claire that makes computer suspension assembly units.  The Eau Claire County Circuit Court judgment requires Hutchinson Technology to pay $95,000 in forfeitures and court costs for violations of its Wisconsin air pollution control permit and Wisconsin’s air pollution laws.

 

According to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), which issues air pollution control permits, the conditions in such permits protect public health by restricting emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), the pollutants at issue in this case.  Over-exposure to these pollutants can be a serious threat to human health and the environment.  Air pollution permits contain both emissions limitations for VOCs, and emission monitoring and record-keeping requirements for facilities to demonstrate compliance with those limitations.  Hutchinson Technology is classified as a “major source” under Wisconsin’s air pollution control laws.   

 

According to the civil complaint, Hutchinson Technology violated state law when it exceeded its emissions limitation for VOCs during six days in the ozone seasons of 2011 and 2012.  It also failed to collect and record compliance demonstration data for 306 days for the use of its thermal oxidizer, a unit that will destroy significant amounts of VOCs when it is operated properly.  These violations are both designated High Priority Violations by the United States Environmental Protection Agency.  In addition, Hutchinson Technology failed to properly measure and record required data to demonstrate compliance with its permit when operating the wet scrubber for six months in 2012, and failed to maintain a complete and updated malfunction prevention and abatement plan.  Hutchinson Technology has taken steps to correct the violations alleged in the complaint.  It has cooperated with the Attorney General’s office to expeditiously resolve the enforcement action brought as a result of the violations.

 

Assistant Attorney General Lorraine C. Stoltzfus represented the State.  The judgment and order were approved by Eau Claire County Circuit Court Judge Paul J. Lenz.

 

Copies of the Summons and Complaint, Judgment, and the Stipulation and Order for Judgment are available at the following links:

Judgment

Summons and Complaint

Stipulation and Order for Judgment