HARTFORD, CT - Three New Haven companies and their operator must pay nearly $750,000 in civil penalties under a recent court order for violating the state’s hazardous waste and air pollution control laws and regulations, Attorney General George Jepsen and state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Daniel C. Esty said today.
Suraci Incorporated, Suraci Metal Finishing LLC, Suraci Paint & Powder Coating LLC and Bruno F. Suraci, Jr., operate metal finishing businesses at two locations in New Haven, including a facility on River Street adjacent to the Quinnipiac River.
The state alleged that activities conducted at the sites produced hazardous waste and that the defendants failed to comply with laws regulating that waste, thereby exposing employees, the public and the environment to serious risks. The state also alleged that the defendants completely failed to comply with air pollution control statutes intended to regulate emissions from equipment in operation at the sites.
“Hazardous waste violations are no small matter,” said Attorney General Jepsen. “Failure to properly manage dangerous substances exposes the public and the environment to potential risks. This is a significant judgment and should serve as a warning that those who engage in this kind of conduct will be held responsible for their actions.”
“Connecticut’s environmental laws are designed to protect the health and safety of citizens in our state,” said Commissioner Esty. “This judgment sends a clear message that the actions of companies who violate these laws and regulations will not be tolerated.”
The state’s complaint alleged multiple violations, including improper storage and labeling, lack of proper state and federal permits, failure to conduct inspections, failure to separate incompatible waste materials and lack of proper employee training and certification.
The court ordered the defendants to pay a $700,000 civil penalty for violation of hazardous waste management statutes and regulations, a $33,500 civil penalty for violation of air pollution control statues and regulations and a $10,000 penalty for failure to obtain a Title V emissions permit. All defendants are fully liable for payment. The court also granted requested injunctive relief requiring the defendants to comply with all laws and regulations related to environmental protection, air pollution control and hazardous waste management.
Assistant Attorneys General Matthew Levine, Sharon Seligman and Kimberly Massicotte, head of the Environment Department, assisted the Attorney General with this matter.