U.P. Breaking News Exclusive: KBIC tells state of Michigan to stop committing federal crimes against Native Americans in ongoing dispute over cigarette taxes and more

At issue, millions of dollars in tobacco revenues

Northern Michigan tribe accuses state of Michigan of persecuting tribes by unleashing federal crimes against Native Americans and interfering with tribal commerce in fight over cigarette taxes

KBIC vs State Graphic Counts 1 to 9

KBIC vs State Graphic Counts 10 to 20

(Above) KBIC charges as stated in 20-count federal complaint

 

Seneca vs marlboroSeneca versus the state of Michigan: Tax hungry Michigan settles tobacco agreements with 10 of Michigan’s 12 Native American tribes – but two Upper Peninsula tribes says its government creep into tribal business and KBIC tells Michigan to back off

U.P. Breaking News Exclusive: KBIC tells state of Michigan to stop committing federal crimes against Native Americans in ongoing dispute over cigarette taxes

By Greg Peterson

Upper Peninsula Breaking News

(Marquette, MI) – The Keweenaw Bay Indian Community is not backing down – and in fact is ratcheting up – its decades long battle with the state of Michigan over the taxing of cigarettes.

The Pines Convenience Center 2Reacting to the threat of possible criminal charges and claiming its being coerced by the state, the tribe recently filed a 20-count, 60-page federal tribal rights lawsuit against four state officials in charge of enforcing and collecting taxes for cigarette sales and more.

The May 20 suit stems from large cigarette seizures by state police including in February and December 2015.

During the the Feb. 8 incident, state police seized of 184 cases of untaxed Seneca cigarettes amounting to over 11,000 cartons valued at nearly $200,000 during separate traffic stops by state police.

Tribal officials said the confiscated smokes were going to be sold on the reservation – therefore the state has no right to seize the cigarettes that are manufactured by Native Wholesale Supply Company, a tribal-chartered corporation that distributes tobacco products and is based in Perrysburg, NY on the Seneca Nation and operated by a Native American.

Meanwhile, in December over 3,300 cartons of untaxed Seneca brand smokes valued at nearly $66,000 were seized by state police. KBIC bought the cigarettes from an economic development arm of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska. The cigarettes were confiscated after tribal member John Davis was stopped by state police on U.S. 41 in Ely Township in west Marquette County.

“Davis was stopped by Michigan State Trooper (Chris) Lajimodiere, purportedly for speeding. However, no

speeding citation was ever issued,” the lawsuit states. Under forfeiture laws, state police also confiscated the pickup truck Davis was driving and the trailer that was used to haul the smokes.

KBIC is asking for immediate relief from a federal judge in the form of an injunction to stop the state from illegally seizing untaxed tribal cigarettes in a scheme the tribe alleges violates federal law.

KBIC vs State Graphic 7The suit names several articles in the U.S. Constitution including the “Supremacy” clause that prohibits the feds from “unilaterally claiming federal supremacy over Indian tribes,” and 1983 Indian Traders Statues that cover Native Americans doing business, and a “Commerce Clause” in the Constitution that protects Native American business owners. The suit also sites an 1842 treaty between the Chippewa and the U.S. government involving ceded lands and commercial trade in Indian Country.

The seizures were scored by the MSP Eighth District Tobacco Enforcement Team assisted by MSP Troopers from the Iron Mountain Post. State police stopped KBIC cigarette delivery trucks in Iron County and Marquette County. The Michigan Attorney General’s office is continuing its investigation into the latest state police seizures of cigarettes without a tax stamp.

After the seizures, the tribe issued a statement saying it will not “be forced by the state of Michigan to enter into a tax agreement that would subject KBIC to a one-sided, burdensome state process.”

The lawsuit is the latest in an ongoing tax battle between the state and the KBIC. Michigan has imposed an excise tax on cigarettes since 1947 and that tax has risen many times bringing in nearly a billion dollars annually to the state to help finance education, the Healthy Michigan Fund, and the Medicaid Fund.

KBIC says it is illegal for the state to seize cigarettes intended for its members – and cited the state’s complicated tax systems including the Michigan Sales Tax Act, the Michigan Use Tax Act and the Michigan Tobacco Products Tax Act (aka Tobacco Products Tax Act).

MI SOS Ruth Johnson

Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson

Michigan Treasurer Nick A. Khouri

Michigan Treasurer Nick A. Khouri

The defendants are Michigan Treasurer Nick A. Khouri, Michigan Secretary of State (SOS) Ruth Johnson, Michigan Treasury Dept. Native American Affairs Specialist Walter A. Fratzke; and Michigan State Police Sergeant Christopher Crowley, who is responsible for enforcing and investigating violations of Michigan tax law, including the Tobacco Products Tax Act

Upper Peninsula Breaking News left messages for KBIC tribal attorney Danielle Webb and Skip Durocher, a Minneapolis attorney representing the tribe. Messages seeking comment were sent via email to Tribal Council President Warren “Chris” Swartz, KBIC CEO Larry Denomie and asst. CEO Sarah Maki.

MI Attorney General Bill Schuette

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette

The Michigan Attorney General Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette’s office was efforting a possible statement even though the long Memorial Day weekend is underway. KBIC has over 3,600 enrolled members and over 1,000 live on the reservation or trust lands.

 

The tribe accuses state officials of illegally enforcing the Michigan Tobacco Products Tax Act, in “a manner that violates federal and state law and impermissibly restricts the Community’s rights to purchase, sell, and transport tobacco products free from unlawful Michigan tobacco products taxes and free from other unlawful and impermissible seizures and other burdens,” the suit states.

The suit accuses Michigan officials of enforcing the Use Tax Act in a manner that “violates federal and state law and impermissibly restricts the Community’s and Community members’ rights to purchase, lease, rent, use, store, and consume tangible personal property and services free from unlawful Michigan sales and use taxes and free from other unlawful and impermissible burdens.”

A 20-year agreement (1977-1997) between tribes and Michigan over smokes and other tribal tax issues was terminated by the state. That pact covered taxes on cigarettes and gas. After the state terminated the pact, KBIC began to sell tobacco products on reservation and trust land to both natives and non-natives without the state’s tax stamp. That agreement allowed tribal members to purchase many items without paying a state sales tax including cars, trucks, snowmobiles, boats, airplanes, homes and items needed to build a home.

In recent years, tribal members have submitted claims to the state on these items and other concerns like expensive prescriptions. The vast majority of the claims have been rejected, a handful were approved by the state, and others are missing in action, the lawsuit alleges.

The State has entered into tax agreements with 10 of the 12 federally recognized Indian tribes located in Michigan. Agreements have not been reached with Keweenaw Bay Indian Community and the Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians. The burden of collecting and paying taxes on tobacco products is on the tribes – not something that sits well with KBIC officials.

The tribe sites additional hours for several employees each month to accurately determine how much is owed the state. Because the state requires the tribes to purchase cigarettes on which taxes have already been paid, among the duties of the tribe is to file tobacco tax forms – and that allows the state to hold on to tribal monies until the refund paperwork is filed.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Timothy P. Greeley referred the case to a trial judge – the honorable federal judge Robert Holmes Bell – who ruled against the tribe in an earlier lawsuit..

The tribe lost a similar federal tribal rights lawsuit that was filed on March 27, 2008 and decided by the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 26, 2009 – as the appeals court upheld a ruling by Judge Bell that stated the court is “entering a judgment in favor of defendants on all of plaintiff’s remaining claims.”

In the 2008 suit, Judge Bell ruled KBIC “has not prevailed on the merits of its claims” and KBIC “is not entitled to permanent injunctive relief.” KBIC even lost its claim to cover attorney’s fees and other costs. However, in its suit, the tribe claims the judge left the door open to return to court depending on appeal’s court rulings on law important to the case.

The tribe is suffering an “economic burden” because the “tribal retailer must wait for tobacco tax refunds and suffers a loss of use of funds during this time period,” Judge Bell stated in his Sept. 2005 opinion on the original lawsuit.

However, Judge Bell ruled that “the state’s interests in collecting the cigarette tax clearly outweighs the tribe’s interests in marketing a tax exemption.”

Judge Bell noted the U.S. Supreme Court has “never approved a tax refund system for Indian cigarette sales” adding “there is no evidence” that the nation’s highest court “has ever considered a refund system such as that used by Michigan.”

“The revenue it derives from the sale of cigarettes to non-Indians comes not from value generated on the reservations but from the marketing of a state tax exemptions,” Judge Bell wrote. The KBIC “sales of untaxed cigarettes also threaten the economic welfare of non-tribal stores in the area that sell cigarettes”

In the early 2,000s, the Michigan State Police Tobacco Tax Team made numerous KBIC related raids in several U.P. Counties seizing thousands of cartons of untaxed smokes at locations that included the tribe’s casinos in Baraga and Harvey, plus the U.S. Postal Service regional distribution center in Kingsford.

The Pines Convenience Center 1

The Pines Convenience Center 4 logoThe tribe says it will loose millions in revenue. In fact, its no secret that non-native smokers – who are paying high Michigan taxes on cigarettes sold on non-tribal lands – sometimes make special trips to KBIC casinos or to the Pines Convenience Center and Smoke Shop, the tribal convenience store on U.S.-41 in Baraga. The tribe also sells cigarettes at the Rez Stop, a gas station convenience store in L’Anse.

For example, KBIC stated in court documents its 2001 revenues from untaxed cigarettes of nearly $557,000 dropped to $126,000 in 2002. The tribe and state have worked on various ways to resolve the problem including quotas on how many untaxed cigarettes KBIC can sell each year to natives – and not the public.

However those efforts led to additional accusations including that one KBIC member who bought up to 150 cartons of tax-free cigarettes each month and was selling the smokes on the internet. Plus non-native retailers in the area complained to the state treasury department that the tribe had an unfair advantage selling untaxed cigarettes.

One state proposal involved a quota of 3.2 million untaxed cigarettes annually, but the tribe counter put the quota at 8 million individual cigarette sticks. In 2004, the tribe started limiting natives to two cartons per week of untaxed smokes at a cost of $25 per carton, while non-members would pay $30 per carton.

All the defendants are being sued “in official and individual capacities.”

Treasurer Khouri oversees an “agency that administers and enforces the Sales, Use, and Tobacco Products Tax Acts.” The department’s Native American Affairs Specialist Fratzke “is the department official charged with administering, enforcing and applying federal and state laws to Michigan tribes and tribal members as they involve Michigan taxes, including sales, use, and tobacco products taxes..”

MI SOS Johnson “manages and administers programs and services” including the Sales and Use Tax Acts” involving “motor vehicle transactions.” MSP Sgt. Crowley “coordinated, authorized, and executed the seizures of tobacco products” and other KBIC “community property at issue in this action.”

Agreements between the state and tribes are in place with these communities:

Bay Mills Indian Community

Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians

Hannahville Indian Community

Little River Band of Ottawa Indians

Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians

Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians

Nottawaseppi Huron Band of Potawatomi Indians

Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians

Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan

Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians

www.saulttribe.com/government/240-government/tribal-tax-agreement/1358-tribal-tax-agreement

Tribal Homes Pages:

Bay Mills Chippewa Indian Community

Grand Traverse Bay Ottawa and Chippewa Indians

Hannahville Potawatomi Indian Community

Keweenaw Bay Indian Community

Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians

Little River Band of Ottawa Indians

Little Traverse Bay Band of Odawa Indians

Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians Gun Lake Tribe

Nottawaseppi Huron Band of Potawatomi

Pokagon Band of Potawatomi

Saginaw Chippewa Tribe

Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians

Michigan Sales Tax Act

Michigan Use Tax Act

Michigan Tobacco Products Tax Act aka Tobacco Products Tax Act

www.michigan.gov/taxes/0,4676,7-238-43519_43529—,00.html

http://search.michigan.gov/search?affiliate=mi-taxes&query=tribe

www.michigan.gov/documents/taxes/4765_329211_7.pdf?20160527101322

https://www.michigan.gov/som/0,1607,7-192-29701_41909_42804—,00.html

http://tribal.golearnportal.org/return.php

www.michigan.gov/sos/0,4670,7-127-49534—,00.html

www.michigan.gov/sos

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruth_Johnson

www.michigan.gov/treasury

www.michigan.gov/treasury/0,4679,7-121-1755-352726–,00.html

www.michigan.gov/msp

KBIC:

CEO Larry J. Denomie III

Assistant CEO Sarah Maki

KBIC Tribal Center

16429 Bear Town Road

Baraga, MI 49908

larryd@kbic-nsn.gov

sarah@kbic-nsn.gov

(906) 353-6623 ext. 4104

Previous suit:

http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-6th-circuit/1309198.html

http://narf.org/nill/bulletins/dct/documents/rising.html

Matthew L.M. Fletcher

Michigan State University Law Prof. Matthew L.M. Fletcher

“Keweenaw Bay Indian Community Sues over Michigan Sales & Use and Tobacco Taxes by Matthew L.M. Fletcher on May 23, 2016

 

517-432-6909 Intercom: 190

matthew.fletcher@law.msu.edu

https://turtletalk.files.wordpress.com/2016/05/complaint.pdf

https://turtletalk.files.wordpress.com/2009/05/michigan-appellee-brief.pdf
Fletcher is Professor of Law at Michigan State University College of Law and Director of the Indigenous Law and Policy Center. He is the Chief Justice of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians Supreme Court and also sits as an appellate judge for the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians, the Hoopa Valley Tribe, and the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of Potawatomi Indians. He is a member of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, located in Peshawbestown, Michigan. In 2010, Professor Fletcher was elected to the American Law Institute.

The Keweenaw Bay Indian Community sells tobacco at The Pines Convenience Center, a gas station and convenience store in Baraga, Michigan. Photo from Facebook

www.indianz.com/m.asp?url=https://www.facebook.com/thepinesconveniencecenter

State Police troopers seize cigarettes headed to KBIC businesses (WLUC 2/16)

http://uppermichiganssource.com/news/local/state-police-troopers-seize-cigarettes-headed-to-kbic-businesses


Tribe: Cigarette seizures infringe on sovereignty (The Houghton Daily Mining Gazette 2/17 by Dan Roblee droblee@mininggazette.com)

http://www.mininggazette.com/page/content.detail/id/551069/Tribe–Cigarette-seizures-infringe-on-sovereignty.html?nav=5006


Tobacco taxation old battle for KBIC, state (The Houghton Daily Mining Gazette 2/17)

www.mininggazette.com/page/content.detail/id/551070/Tobacco-taxation-old-battle-for-KBIC–state.html?nav=5006

Tribal tax battles across U.S.

http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2012/03/09/state-versus-tribe-tobacco-issues-resurface-101636

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From paper industry giants and insurance companies blaming each other for polluting famous rivers in two states – to the battle over what companies must pay billions of dollars in cleanup expenses – and even the discovery of five historic shipwrecks – the latest on the federal lawsuits and cleanup of the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site in Michigan and a judge takes steps to approve federal consent decrees in Fox River Superfund Site near Green Bay, Wisconsin

From paper industry giants and insurance companies blaming each other for polluting famous rivers in two states – to the battle over what companies must pay billions of dollars in cleanup expenses – and even the discovery of five historic shipwrecks

A trial date just set in federal lawsuits and cleanup of the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site in Michigan

A federal judge takes steps to approve federal consent decrees in Fox River Superfund Site near Green Bay, Wisconsin by ordering $54 million set aside by those companies and governments responsible for the clean up

By Greg Peterson/Upper Peninsula Breaking News

UpperPeninsulaBreakingNews@gmail.com

(Kalamazoo, Michigan – Green Bay, Wisconsin) – Major developments today on a pair of Superfund clean up sites in two states involving major rivers that feed Lake Michigan.

A federal judge in Grand Rapids has just pushed back a trial date in a lawsuit involving paper industry giants battling over the costs of cleaning up the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site -. Meanwhile, a federal judge in Milwaukee appears close to approving a consent decree between paper industry corporations and governments to set costs for those involved in the Fox River Superfund Site.

On August 13, 2014, United States District Judge Robert J. Jonker in Grand Rapids set a September 22, 2015 trial date for phase II of the four-year lawsuit against NRC Corporation and International Paper Company by Plaintiffs Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products LP, Fort James Corporation, and Georgia-Pacific, LLC.

Judge Jonker ordered settlement conferences on April 15, 2015 and August 13, 2015 in Grand Rapids before Magistrate Judge Hugh W. Brenneman, Jr.

On September 26, 2013, federal Judge Jonker ordered that Defendants NCR Corporation and International Paper Company are liable parties that must pay for cleanup costs – however  many other litigation issues remain involving the costs.

Paper Industry Giants continue fighting each other in United States federal courts – for millions of dollars in connection with the cleanup of the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site – and about a billion dollars for cleaning up the Fox River Superfund Site.

There are several proposed federal consent decrees (March 2014) in the Fox River Superfund Site – that are expected to approved by a federal judge.

Fox River Superfund Site: $54 million in PCBs damage monies set aside as federal judge poised to approved consent decree: Governments and paper-related companies to admit their PCBs seriously hurt two American Indian nations in Wisconsin; pay cleanup costs

An “intergovernmental Memoranda of Agreement” has been reached by “parties” involved including the United States, the state of Wisconsin and the two tribes.

The federal consent decree forces the companies and governments involved to admit that two Native American tribes “have been injured by the PCB contamination,”according to the proposed decree obtained by Upper Peninsula Breaking News.

The tribal lands contaminated by PCBs are owned by the Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin (OTIW) and the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin (MITW).

Those who are part of the proposed decree are admitting that tribal lands were seriously damaged by the PCBs.

OTIW, MITW are the “tribal trustees for natural resources at and near that (Fox River Superfund) Site that have been injured by the PCB contamination,” the proposed decree states.

An “intergovernmental Memoranda of Agreement” has been reached by “parties” involved including the United States, the state of Wisconsin and the two tribes, according to the proposed decree.

“The United States, the State, and the Tribes are co-signatories to the proposed Consent Decrees,” the proposed decree states.

Federal Judge William C. Griesbach has ordered those involved in the consent decrees to put over $54 million dollars on deposit for when the decree is finalized:

  • $1,350,000 by Kimberly Clark
  • $5,200,000 by the City of Appleton
  • $3,000,000 by CBC Coating, Inc.
  • $13,700,000 by Menasha Corporation
  • $5,200,000 by the Neenah-Menasha Sewerage Commission
  • $14,700,000 by U.S. Paper Mills Corporation
  • $12,200,000 by WTM I Company
  • $100,000 by the State of Wisconsin

Meanwhile – the EPA in July 2014 filed its “Five-Year Review Report” on the status of the cleanup of the the Fox River Superfund Site.

The first proposed Federal Consent Decree is with the City of Appleton, CBC Coating Inc., Menasha Corporation, the Neenah-Menasha Sewerage Commission, U.S. Paper Mills Corporation, and WTM I Company.

Those six Settling Defendants would pay a total of $54 million toward the response costs and natural resource damages associated with the Fox River Superfund Site.

Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), the companies realize they will be held responsible for cleanup.

The State of Wisconsin would pay an additional $100,000 to resolve its own potential CERCLA liability, as alleged in certain counterclaims asserted by some of the defendants in this case.

The second proposed Consent Decree is with Settling Defendant Kimberly-Clark Corporation.

Kimberly-Clark would pay the United States and the State a total of $1,350,000 under this de minimis settlement pursuant to CERCLA.

The third proposed Consent Decree is with Settling Defendant NewPage Wisconsin System Inc.

NewPage filed a petition for relief under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in 2011.

As referenced in the proposed Consent Decree with NewPage, certain governmental claims against NewPage for the Fox River Site are potentially eligible for payment from a specially-established Fox River Reserve that is being administered by Liquidation Trust formed and governed in accordance with NewPage’s court-approved Reorganization Plan in its bankruptcy case.

The proposed Consent Decree with NewPage would grant the United States and the State allowed general unsecured claims for a total of $1,157,254 that would be paid as allowed claims by the Litigation Trust.

Because such claims are paid on a deeply-discounted basis under NewPage’s Reorganization Plan, the actual distributions that the

United States and the State will receive on those allowed claims may be as little as $50,000.

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #10Plaintiffs Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products LP, Fort James Corporation, and Georgia-Pacific LLC – brought the multimillion dollar civil action against the other paper industry giants under the famous Superfund – that is used to clean up industrial sites after international corporations leave behind an environmental mess.

Called Superfund – officially its under the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act.

The suit states “the case is about allocating responsibility for contamination of the Allied Paper Inc./Portage Creek/Kalamazoo River Superfund Site – aka Kalamazoo River Superfund Site” or “the Site” in southwestern Michigan.”

Kalamazoo River Superfund EPA Photo of River
Photo of Portage Creek – Kalamazoo River in Michigan by USEPA

Right now, Georgia-Pacific wants others to split the costs – $79 million or more.

A request basically approved by a judge – but more issues remain.

The paper companies identify the culprit as Aroclor 1242 – the cancer causing PCB left over from making Carbonless Copy Paper (CCP) using a process called “broke and trim.”

Contamination from the PCB-laden “broke and trim” has made large segments of the Kalamazoo River an “NCR river,” with NCR CCP being the source of the PCB-contaminated sediments that require remediation at the Kalamazoo River Superfund Sit, the suit states.

The plaintiffs (Georgia-Pacific) argue that the Kalamazoo River would not have been listed as a Federal Superfund site if “not for NCR’s use of PCBs in its CCP; and for the contamination of the Kalamazoo River by PCB Aroclor 1242 attributable to NCR broke and trim.

The lawsuit was filed on December 3, 2010 in two districts due to the wide range of issues and another Superfund site – the Fox River Superfund Site in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Due to various legal connections with the Fox River Superfund Site, the cases were filed in the United States District Court For The Western District of Michigan, Southern Division and the United States District Court For The Eastern District Of Wisconsin Green Bay Division.

The following fascinating 2014 update on the Fox River Superfund Site from the EPA includes historic shipwrecks and progress paper companies are making in the cleanup:

“In a May 1, 2013, federal court ruling, U.S. District Judge William Griesbach required seven companies that EPA considers responsible for the PCB contamination to continue and complete the required cleanup work.
Three legal agreements for settlements totaling about $55 million were lodged in federal court on March 26, 2014.
If a judge approves these agreements, or consent decrees, this would resolve claims against six companies and two municipal sewer system operators for cleanup costs and natural resource damages in the Lower Fox River.
In April, the remaining portions of five historical ships were pulled out of the Lower Fox River just north of the southern “railroad bridge” in Green Bay.
This work was done under a legal agreement signed by EPA, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, the state historic preservation officer, Green Bay’s Neville Museum, and NCR Corp.’s contractor.
The ships, two of which date back to the 1880s, were discovered in 2008 by archaeologists hired to document artifacts found in the river from Appleton to Green Bay.
With the help of Wisconsin historians, nautical organizations and maritime museums, two were identified as the Bob Teed and the Satisfaction.
Little information is available on the three other wooden barges near the shoreline by the State Street sediment processing facility.
Six years ago, the archaeologists were charged with making recommendations on how to handle the ships, also referred to as artifacts, so the cleanup could proceed on schedule.
Because these sunken vessels are considered to be cultural resources, they must be ‘replaced’ if they are removed.
The paper companies have agreed to build a display for The Neville Public Museum of Brown County to ‘replace’ these resources.
The display is expected to be ready next year.”

The Kalamazoo Superfund Site is contaminated with PCBs – “Polychlorinated Biphenyls” – caused in the production of Carbonless Copy Paper (CCP).

PCBs are a hazardous substance and often connected to human carcinogen and kills wildlife.

The primary PCB contaminant at the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site is known as Aroclor 1242.

From 1954 through 1971, PCBs were released into the Kalamazoo River and connected Portage Creek (flows directly into the Kalamazoo River) partly through the past discharge, release, and disposal of PCB-contaminated solids and paper residuals by paper de-inking and recycling companies.

Georgia-Pacific/Fort James River Corp. wants the other paper giants (NCR Corporation and International Paper Co.) to pay their fair portion of past and future cleanup costs associated with the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site.

U.S. Justice Department photo of pollution on the Fox River

U.S. Justice Department photo of pollution on the Fox River

The fight between these wealthy paper-related behemoths arises from many of the same activities by the NCR Corporation and International Paper Co. – that are at issue in the case of Appleton Papers, Inc. and NCR Corporation v. George A. Whiting Paper Company (No. 08-CV-00016-WCG).

That suit brought by NCR Corporation (NCR) and others for costs associated with the investigation and remediation of the PCB contamination in the Fox River area.

In fact, last month (July 2014) the EPA released a “Five Year Review Report” on the Fox River Superfund Site cleanup plans.

On March 26, 2014, the EPA entered into “three Proposed Consent Decrees” – agreements between the EPA and several of the paper companies that polluted the Fox River:

The defendants made arrangements with brokers that ultimately resulted in the release of PCBs into the Kalamazoo River, the lawsuits claim.

Georgia-Pacific filed the lawsuit to establish the liability of Defendants and determine their equitable costs of cleaning up the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, the suit states.

Georgia-Pacific wants to require the defendants to pay their fair portion of past and future cleanup costs associated with the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site.

The suit was also filed due to “claims in this action arise from many of the same activities by the Defendants which are at issue in the case of Appleton Papers, Inc. and NCR Corporation v. George A. Whiting Paper Company for costs associated with the investigation and remediation of the PCB contamination in Fox River” in Green Bay, the suit states

“And because the defendants made arrangements in this District with brokers that ultimately resulted in the release of PCBs into the Kalamazoo River.”

Georgia-Pacific is the corporate successor to Kalamazoo-area facilities that deinked and recycled PCB-containing NCR broke and trim.

Georgia-Pacific has paid in excess of $79 million to investigate and remediate the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, the company states.

NCR invented the PCB-containing Carbonless Copy Paper (CCP) that has caused the PCB contamination of the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, Georgia-Pacific alleges.

Plus GP alleges that NCR arranged for the disposal of PCB-laden waste from its own CCP converting operations.

Georgia-Pacific claims NCR arranged for the disposal of PCB-laden broke and trim from its contract coaters.

Contract coaters” are the companies that used NCR’s coating (using NCR’s specifications) using an NCR emulsion.

NCR is also the corporate successor to at least two coaters — the Wisconsin-based Appleton

Coated Paper Company (ACPC), and Combined Paper Mills, Inc. (aka Combined Locks Mill).

Those companies arranged for the disposal of PCB-laden broke and trim resulting from the coating of NCR CCP, the suit states.

Waste paper from all these activities was recycled at facilities near the Kalamazoo River, with resulting releases of PCBs into the Kalamazoo River, according to Georgia-Pacific, putting most of the blame and expense on the other paper giant (NCR).

NCR has paid nothing toward the cleanup, Georgia-Pacific states in lawsuit.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) conducted studies between 1972 and 1989 that “determined that certain areas in and around the Kalamazoo

River below Morrow Dam were contaminated with PCBs,” the suit states.

The Allied Paper Inc./Portage Creek/Kalamazoo River Superfund Site was declared a Federal Superfund site by the United States Environmental Protection Agency in August 1990.

In fact, the site was placed on the Superfund National Priority List (NPL).

In 1990, the site was listed by the MDNR as an environmental contamination site under the Michigan Environmental Response Act, the suit states.

EPA identified Georgia-Pacific as a “potentially responsible party” (“PRP”) at the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site.

Georgia-Pacific is now the only remaining PRP left at the Site to provide ongoing funding to investigate and remediate the PCB contamination of the Kalamazoo River, due to the bankruptcies of other PRPs at the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, the suit states.

Only one other company is currently involved in remedial activity at the Kalamazoo.

Weyerhaeuser Company is funding measures to remediate a landfill it owned, and to investigate and remediate a former paper mill it owned, the suit claims.

PCBs were introduced to Portage Creek and the Kalamazoo River largely through past discharges, releases, and disposal of PCB-contaminated solids and paper residuals by paper manufacturing operations on Portage Creek and the Kalamazoo River, the suit charges.

The Kalamazoo River Superfund Site currently includes five disposal areas, four paper mill properties, an approximately 80-mile stretch of the Kalamazoo River from Morrow Dam to Lake Michigan, and a three-mile stretch of Portage Creek, the suit states.

There are several areas that need total cleanup, the suits state:

Operable Unit 1 is the Allied Paper/Bryant Mill Pond Operable Unit

Operable Unit 2 (Willow Boulevard/A-Site Landfill)

A groundwater investigation was undertaken in the summer of 2009 at Operable Unit 2 (Willow Boulevard/A-Site Landfill),the suit states

In September 2009, a consent decree was signed between the EPA and Georgia-Pacific for design and cleanup at the Willow Boulevard/A-Site Landfill was approved by the Federal District Court.

This decree/settlement, among other things, obligates Georgia-Pacific to consolidate waste materials, construct a permanent landfill cap, and install a groundwater monitoring system.

Operable Unit 3 is the King Highway Landfill

The remedy involves the construction of a landfill cap, the seeding of the cap with vegetative growth, and the construction of a gas collection trench (under the control of the State of Michigan).

Operable Unit 4 is the Twelfth Street Landfill

In September 2001, EPA san agreement and the remedy includes excavation of PCB residuals that have migrated from the landfill and placement of those residuals back in the landfill. This work is conducted by Weyerhaeuser with oversight by EPA and MDNR.

Operable Unit 5 concerns the Portage Creek and Kalamazoo River sediments

In February 2007, EPA reached two settlement agreements with Millennium Holdings

LLC (which has since gone bankrupt) and with Georgia-Pacific.

The agreements were the result of two years of mediated negotiations between the possible responsible parties (PRPs) and various government regulators and entities, including the EPA and the State of Michigan.

Georgia-Pacific and Millennium agreed to perform sediment excavation in the Kalamazoo River near Plainwell, Michigan, the suit states.

Georgia-Pacific and Millennium agreed to conduct a Supplemental Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study (Supplemental RI/FS) on the 80-mile stretch of the Kalamazoo River from Morrow Dam to Lake Michigan and Portage Creek from Cork Street to the confluence with the Kalamazoo River.

Georgia-Pacific’s Expenditures to Clean Up the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site:

Georgia-Pacific has spent at least $79 million dollars (as of Dec. 2010) to investigate and remediate the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, and to investigate the liability of other potentially responsible parties, such as NCR and International Paper.

You can read the originals:

Read or download Lawsuit Filed Between Paper Giants 12-3-10

Read or download the Georgia-Pacific vs NCR financial ruling 9-26-13

Carbonless Copy Paper (CCP)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbonless_copy_paper

http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2001-107/

http://www.google.com/patents/US2730457

http://news.ufl.edu/archive/1997/05/scientists-test-carbonless-copy-paper-for-sickening-side-effects.html

http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1144326/000114432613000031/R18.htm

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site

http://www.epa.gov/region05/cleanup/kalproject/index.htm

http://www.michigan.gov/deq/0,4561,7-135-3304-84646–,00.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalamazoo_Superfund_Site

http://www.fws.gov/midwest/es/ec/nrda/KalamazooRiver

http://www.kalamazoorivercleanup.org

https://www.kzooriver.com/kalamazoo

http://www.epa.gov/region5/cleanup/kalproject/images/OUmap.gif

http://www.epa.gov/region5/cleanup/kalproject/photos.htm

Photo of “Portage Creek – Kalamazoo River, Michigan” by EPA

www.michigan.gov/images/main_82481_7.jpg

“<a href=”http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Portage_Creek_-_Kalamazoo_River,_Michigan.jpeg#mediaviewer/File:Portage_Creek_-_Kalamazoo_River,_Michigan.jpeg”>Portage Creek – Kalamazoo River, Michigan</a>” by EPA – <a rel=”nofollow” class=”external free” href=”http://www.michigan.gov/images/main_82481_7.jpg”>http://www.michigan.gov/images/main_82481_7.jpg</a&gt;. Licensed under Public domain via <a href=”//commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/”>Wikimedia Commons</a>

Check out the seeps at base of TP1, Elizabeth Copper Mine Superfund Site Vermont, USA – Important to Upper Peninsula residents because of the pollution feared by sulfide and copper mining across northern Michigan near Lake Superior

[Large version of seep photo]

U.S/ Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA)

www.epa.gov/superfund/policy/cercla.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superfund

http://www.epa.gov/agriculture/lcla.html

U.S. Damage Assessment, Remediation & Restoration Program (DARRP)

www.darrp.noaa.gov/greatlakes/kalamazoo

www.westonsolutions.com/projects/project_kalamazooriver.htm

www.terracontracting.net/Multimedia/Video/TabId/74/VideoId/6/Kalamazoo-River-Superfund-Site.aspx

Kalamazoo River Watershed Council (KRWC)

http://kalamazooriver.org/?page_id=217

The Environmental Law Reporter

http://elr.info/subject-matter-index-cases/allied-paper-portage-creek-kalamazoo-river-superfund-site-%28mich.%29/3384

http://upton.house.gov/uploadedfiles/05_13_2014_congressional_letter_to_epa_re_kalamazoo_superfund.pdf

http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-6th-circuit/1022237.html

http://www.thefederalregister.com/d.p/2014-02-18-2014-03332

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1897/04-493R.1/abstract

www.msu.edu/user/giesy/Projects/Presentations/KZ-SS-BE-01.pdf

Fox River Superfund Site

Authorizing federal defendant deposits in consent decree Fox River Superfund Site

Authorizing federal defendant deposits in consent decree Fox River Superfund Site

EPA Five-Year Review Reports

July 2014 Five Year Review Report (PDF) (68 pp, 4.9MB)

Notice of Lodging of Three Proposed Consent Decrees (PDF) (7pp, 41K), March 26, 2014

Consent Decree With Cashout Settling Defendants and the State of Wisconsin (PDF) (59 pp, 980K), March 26, 2014

Consent Decree With Kimberly Clark (PDF) (32 pp, 541K), March 26, 2014

Consent Decree With Newpage Wisconsin Inc. (PDF) (30 pp, 617K), March 26, 2014

www.epa.gov/Region5/cleanup/foxriver

www.epa.gov/Region5/cleanup/foxriver/#updates

www.justice.gov/enrd/3643.htm

http://www.cerc.usgs.gov/orda_docs/Assets/UploadedFiles/CaseDocuments/Assessment_Documents/WI_Fox-River_AR-PCBs-Pathways_1999.pdf

United States Department of Justice aka United States Justice Department

http://www.justice.gov/enrd/3643.htm

Fox River groups, info:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fox_River_%28Wisconsin%29

http://www.foxriverwatch.com

http://www.foxriverwatch.com/NCR_corporation.html

http://www.foxriverwatch.com/pcb_pcbs_sources_1.html

http://www.foxriverwatch.com/superfund_sediment_remediation.html

http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/greatlakes/greenbay.html

http://www.sevenson.com/index.php/project-summaries/fox-river-superfund-site/

Appvion, Inc. (formerly Appleton Papers Inc.)

http://www.appvion.com/en-us

http://www.appvion.com

https://www.linkedin.com/company/appleton

Appleton Coated

http://www.appletoncoated.com/index.php?GroupID=11

http://www.appletoncoated.com

http://www.appletoncoated.com/greenzone/index.php

Info on lawsuits:

http://www.law360.com/articles/213303/gp-wants-ncr-to-pay-for-mich-superfund-site

http://www.law360.com/companies/ncr-corporation/articles

http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/index.ssf/2013/09/hold_portage_creek_pcb_cleanup_1.html

http://michiganradio.org/post/federal-regulators-say-pcb-cleanup-kalamazoo-river-gaining-momentum

http://michiganradio.org/post/pcb-cleanup-continues-along-kalamazoo-river

http://michiganradio.org/post/kalamazoo-residents-struggle-epa-over-mount-pcb

http://michiganradio.org/post/epa-says-decision-about-kalamazoo-s-mount-pcb-will-come-summer

http://michiganradio.org/post/kalamazoo-rallies-pressure-epa-remove-hazardous-paper-mill-waste

http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1144326/000114432613000031/R18.htm

American College of Environmental Lawyers (ACOEL)

http://www.acoel.org/file.axd?file=2013%2F10%2FGeorgia%2BPacific%2Bv%2BNCR.pdf

http://www.ncr.com/newsroom/resources/united-states-district-court-for-the-western-district-of-michigan-issues-decision-in-phase-i-of-kalamazoo-river-case

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site:

8-22-14 Extending Time For IPC To Respond To NCR Corporation Motion

8-13-14 Reply Brief In Support of Motion To Establish Scope of Phase II Trial

8-8-14 NCR Corp’s Interrogatories to the Other Parties

8-13-14 Amended Order Revising Case Schedule And Addressing Motions

http://www.law360.com/articles/428041/liberty-mutual-fights-ncr-on-79m-superfund-site-coverage

http://www.epa.gov/region5/cleanup/foxriver/pdf/foxriver_cd_201010.pdf

Appleton Papers, Inc.

United States of America and the State of Wisconsin, Plaintiffs–Appellees, v. NCR Corporation, Defendant–Appellant No. 12–2069 August 3, 2012

http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1608058.html

http://fox11online.com/2014/05/15/objections-filed-to-proposed-fox-river-cleanup-settlement

Lawsuit Filed Between Paper Giants 12-3-10 Georgia-Pacific vs NCR financial ruling 9-26-13

An August 2014 EPA update on the Fox River Superfund Site:

EPA has completed a status review of the site’s cleanup. This type of review is required at least every five years where the cleanup is complete–or ongoing–but hazardous waste remains managed on-site. These reviews are done to ensure that the cleanup continues to protect people and the environment.

EPA Five-Year Review Report (PDF) (68 pp, 4.9MB) July 2014

The review included:

  • An evaluation of background information
  • Cleanup requirements
  • Effectiveness of the cleanup and any anticipated future actions
  • An analysis of ways for EPA to operate more efficiently.

This was the second five-year review for the Lower Fox River site.

It details the site progress. The previous review was done in 2009.

The sixth year of dredging in the Lower Fox River from DePere to Green Bay is in progress. About 670,000 cubic yards of PCB-contaminated sediment is expected to be removed this year using at least three hydraulic dredges.

Similar to last year, dredging will take place 24 hours per day, at least five days a week through early November (except for holidays).

Another process referred to as sand capping and covering, which started in 2011, will also continue. This year, 60 acres of sediment will be capped and covered.

All dredged sediment is pumped into the State Street dewatering facility through a pipeline.

Then, the water is squeezed out by special equipment called a plate and frame press.

The remaining dried sediment is loaded onto trucks to be properly disposed of. Some sediment with higher levels of PCBs is trucked to Ridgeview Recycling and Disposal Facility in Whitelaw, near Manitowoc.

Owned by Waste Management of Wisconsin, this landfill received a permit in 2012 from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to accept this type of material.

Since most of the sediment has PCB levels less than 50 parts per million, it is taken to Veolia Hickory Meadows Landfill in Chilton.

The entire cleanup is scheduled to be completed by 2017.

In a May 1, 2013, federal court ruling, U.S. District Judge William Griesbach required seven companies that EPA considers responsible for the PCB contamination to continue and complete the required cleanup work.

EPA Photos Kalamazoo Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #25 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #24 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #28 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #27 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #26 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #25 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #24 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #23 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #22 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #21 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #20 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #19 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #18 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #17 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #16 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #15 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #14 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #13 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #12 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #11 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #10 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #9 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #8 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #7 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #6 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #5 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #4 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #3 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #2 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #1

 

Paper Parody: Corporations Still Think They Are People: $100 Million Cash and Blame Battle Between Paper Making Giants Soon Enters 5th year Slicing Up the Financial Blame for the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site

Corporations Acting More Like Babies Than The “People” – That They Claim To Be:

Twin babies fighting for soother

Especially since the Paper Industry Giants may have killed people with “pollution” – and the Papers Giants Claim to be “People”

  Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #25

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #21 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #22

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #23 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #24 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #25

Paper Giants Battle Over Blame and Expense of Polluting the Kalamazoo River, Surrounding Areas and Real People (Not Corps ) With Cancer-Causing PBCs

MLive story Kalamazoo River Superfund

Paper Industry Giants Duke It Out Over Who Was Worst of the Worst Polluter – Thus Who Picks Up Most of the Tab in Kalamazoo River Superfund Site:
Lawsuits filed in Federal Court in Michigan and Wisconsin – There’s a Tie to the Fox River Superfund Site in Green Bay

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #14 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #15 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #16

Boxer graphic

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #8

In fight over who should pay for pollution – Arrogant Polluting Corporations Believe They Are People:

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #24

$100 Million Blame and Cash Battle Between Paper Making Giants Soon Enters 5th year Slicing Up the Financial Blame for the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site:

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #25

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #2

 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #6

Are the Superfund Violators/Polluters near Lake Michigan a Pretext for What We Can Expect In a Few Years After Owners of the Eagle Mine Decide to Skip Town With Their Pockets Full – Sludging A Path For Similar Sulfide Mines Planned Along Lake Superior – Leaving a Toxic Mess That Is Cheaper to Litigate – Than Clean Up

EPA Photos Kalamazoo

In federal court these paper making corporations  – think they are people

Corporations believe they are ‘People’

Latest in $100 Million Battle Twixt International. Paper Giants on Kalamazoo River Superfund Site – litigation that spills into Fox River Superfund Site in Green Bay:

I fear that the Upper Peninsula Eagle Mine – and other sulfide (acid) mines like it – could be a Superfund-like site when the company sucks up all the valuable minerals it wants and THEN leaves.

We “Pray” That The Evil Corporations Will Not Pollute – and Corps. “Pray” Not to Pay:
Praying for Relief From Federal Judge

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #7

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #8 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #9

GEORGIA-PACIFIC CONSUMER PRODUCTS LP, FORT JAMES CORPORATION, and GEORGIA-PACIFIC LLC

Plaintiffs

www.gp.com

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fort_James

Versus

NCR CORPORATION and INTERNATIONAL PAPER CO.

Defendants

www.ncr.com

www.internationalpaper.com/us

****Notice these corps think they are people – smile

The Big Paper Boys Swing Their Branches and PCB Allegations Against Each Other: In the fight over money between paper industry giants

The case is about allocating responsibility for contamination … of the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site”

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #3

The plaintiffs (Georgia-Pacific) argue that the Kalamazoo River would not have been listed as a Federal Superfund site if “not for NCR’s use of PCBs in its CCP; and for the contamination of the Kalamazoo River by PCB Aroclor 1242 attributable to NCR broke and trim.

Georgia-Pacific filed the lawsuit to establish the liability of Defendants and determine their equitable costs of cleaning up the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site

Georgia-Pacific wants to require Defendants to pay their fair portion of past and future cleanup costs associated with the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site.

The suit was also filed due to “claims in this action arise from many of the same activities by the Defendants which are at issue in the case of Appleton Papers, Inc. and NCR Corporation v. George A. Whiting Paper Company for costs associated with the investigation and remediation of the PCB contamination in Fox River; and because the Defendants made arrangements in this District with brokers that ultimately resulted in the release of PCBs into the Kalamazoo River.

Georgia-Pacific is the corporate successor to Kalamazoo-area facilities that deinked and recycled PCB-containing NCR broke and trim.

Georgia-Pacific has paid in excess of $79 million to investigate and remediate the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, the company states.

NCR invented the PCB-containing Carbonless Copy Paper (CCP) that has caused the PCB contamination of the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, Georgia-Pacific alleges.

Plus GP alleges that NCR arranged for the disposal of PCB-laden waste from its own CCP converting operations.

Georgia-Pacific claims NCR arranged for the disposal of PCB-laden broke and trim from its contract coaters.

Contract coaters” are the companies that used NCR’s coating (using NCR’s specifications) using an NCR emulsion.

NCR is also the corporate successor to at least two coaters — the Wisconsin-based Appleton

Coated Paper Company (ACPC), and Combined Paper Mills, Inc. (aka Combined Locks Mill).

Those companies arranged for the disposal of PCB-laden broke and trim resulting from the coating of NCR CCP.

Waste paper from all these activities was recycled at facilities near the Kalamazoo River, with resulting releases of PCBs into the Kalamazoo River, according to Georgia-Pacific as it tried to put most of the blame and expense on the other paper giant:

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #1

NCR has paid nothing toward the cleanup, Georgia-Pacific cried.

The (once nature concerned) Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) conducted studies between 1972 and 1989 that “determined that certain areas in and around the Kalamazoo

River below Morrow Dam were contaminated with PCBs,” the suit states.

The Allied Paper Inc./Portage Creek/Kalamazoo River Superfund Site was declared a Federal Superfund site by the United States Environmental Protection Agency in August 1990.

In fact, the site was placed on the Superfund National Priority List (NPL).

In 1990, the site was listed by the MDNR as an environmental contamination site under the Michigan Environmental Response Act, the suit states.

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #17 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #18 Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #19

EPA identified Georgia-Pacific as a “potentially responsible party” (“PRP”) at the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site.

Georgia-Pacific is now the only remaining PRP left at the Site to provide ongoing funding to investigate and remediate the PCB contamination of the Kalamazoo River, due to the bankruptcies of other PRPs at the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, the suit states.

Only one other company, Weyerhaeuser Company, is currently involved in remedial activity – is only funding measures to remediate a landfill it owned, and to investigate and remediate a former paper mill it owned, the suit claims.

PCBs were introduced to Portage Creek and the Kalamazoo River largely through past discharges, releases, and disposal of PCB-contaminated solids and paper residuals by paper manufacturing operations on Portage Creek and the Kalamazoo River, the suit charges.

The Kalamazoo River Superfund Site currently includes five disposal areas, four paper mill properties, an approximately 80-mile stretch of the Kalamazoo River from Morrow Dam to Lake Michigan, and a three-mile stretch of Portage Creek, the suit states.

There are several areas that need total cleanup:

Operable Unit 1 is the Allied Paper/Bryant Mill Pond Operable Unit

Operable Unit 2 (Willow Boulevard/A-Site Landfill)

A groundwater investigation was undertaken in the summer of 2009 at Operable Unit 2 (Willow Boulevard/A-Site Landfill),the suit states

In September 2009, a consent decree was signed between the EPA and Georgia-Pacific for design and cleanup at the Willow Boulevard/A-Site Landfill was approved by the Federal District Court.

This decree/settlement, among other things, obligates Georgia-Pacific to consolidate waste materials, construct a permanent landfill cap, and install a groundwater monitoring system.

Operable Unit 3 is the King Highway Landfill

The remedy involves the construction of a landfill cap, the seeding of the cap with vegetative growth, and the construction of a gas collection trench (under the control of the State of Michigan).

Operable Unit 4 is the Twelfth Street Landfill

In September 2001, EPA san agreement and the remedy includes excavation of PCB residuals that have migrated from the landfill and placement of those residuals back in the landfill. This work is conducted by Weyerhaeuser with oversight by EPA and MDNR.

Operable Unit 5 concerns the Portage Creek and Kalamazoo River sediments

In February 2007, EPA reached two settlement agreements with Millennium Holdings

LLC (which has since gone bankrupt) and with Georgia-Pacific.

The agreements were the result of two years of mediated negotiations between the possible responsible parties (PRPs) and various government regulators and entities, including the EPA and the State of Michigan.

Georgia-Pacific and Millennium agreed to perform sediment excavation in the Kalamazoo River near Plainwell, Michigan, the suit states.

Georgia-Pacific and Millennium agreed to conduct a Supplemental Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study (Supplemental RI/FS) on the 80-mile stretch of the Kalamazoo River from Morrow Dam to Lake Michigan and Portage Creek from Cork Street to the confluence with the Kalamazoo River.

Georgia-Pacific’s Expenditures to Clean Up the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site:

Georgia-Pacific has spent at least $79 million dollars (as of Dec. 2010) to investigate and remediate the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site, and to investigate the liability of other potentially responsible parties, such as NCR and International Paper.

You can read the original:

Lawsuit Filed Between Paper Giants 12-3-10

Read or download the Georgia-Pacific vs NCR financial ruling 9-26-13

And read the latest filing of the salvos between these Paper Industry Giants.

Carbonless Copy Paper (CCP).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbonless_copy_paper

http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2001-107/

http://www.google.com/patents/US2730457

http://news.ufl.edu/archive/1997/05/scientists-test-carbonless-copy-paper-for-sickening-side-effects.html

http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1144326/000114432613000031/R18.htm

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site

http://www.epa.gov/region05/cleanup/kalproject/index.htm

http://www.michigan.gov/deq/0,4561,7-135-3304-84646–,00.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalamazoo_Superfund_Site

http://www.fws.gov/midwest/es/ec/nrda/KalamazooRiver

http://www.kalamazoorivercleanup.org

https://www.kzooriver.com/kalamazoo

http://www.epa.gov/region5/cleanup/kalproject/images/OUmap.gif

http://www.epa.gov/region5/cleanup/kalproject/photos.htm

Seeps at base of TP1, Elizabeth Copper Mine Superfund Site Vermont, USA

[Large version of seep photo]

Portage Creek – Kalamazoo River, Michigan Public Domain EPA

“Portage Creek – Kalamazoo River, Michigan” by EPA

www.michigan.gov/images/main_82481_7.jpg

“<a href=”http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Portage_Creek_-_Kalamazoo_River,_Michigan.jpeg#mediaviewer/File:Portage_Creek_-_Kalamazoo_River,_Michigan.jpeg”>Portage Creek – Kalamazoo River, Michigan</a>” by EPA – <a rel=”nofollow” class=”external free” href=”http://www.michigan.gov/images/main_82481_7.jpg”>http://www.michigan.gov/images/main_82481_7.jpg</a&gt;. Licensed under Public domain via <a href=”//commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/”>Wikimedia Commons</a>.

United States Damage Assessment, Remediation & Restoration Program

http://www.darrp.noaa.gov/greatlakes/kalamazoo

http://www.westonsolutions.com/projects/project_kalamazooriver.htm

http://www.terracontracting.net/Multimedia/Video/TabId/74/VideoId/6/Kalamazoo-River-Superfund-Site.aspx

Kalamazoo River Watershed Council (KRWC)

http://kalamazooriver.org/?page_id=217

The Environmental Law Reporter

http://elr.info/subject-matter-index-cases/allied-paper-portage-creek-kalamazoo-river-superfund-site-%28mich.%29/3384

http://upton.house.gov/uploadedfiles/05_13_2014_congressional_letter_to_epa_re_kalamazoo_superfund.pdf

http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-6th-circuit/1022237.html

http://www.thefederalregister.com/d.p/2014-02-18-2014-03332

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1897/04-493R.1/abstract

https://www.msu.edu/user/giesy/Projects/Presentations/KZ-SS-BE-01.pdf

Fox River Superfund Site

http://www.epa.gov/Region5/cleanup/foxriver

http://www.cerc.usgs.gov/orda_docs/Assets/UploadedFiles/CaseDocuments/Assessment_Documents/WI_Fox-River_AR-PCBs-Pathways_1999.pdf

United States Department of Justice aka United States Justice Department

http://www.justice.gov/enrd/3643.htm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fox_River_%28Wisconsin%29

http://www.foxriverwatch.com

http://www.foxriverwatch.com/NCR_corporation.html

http://www.foxriverwatch.com/pcb_pcbs_sources_1.html

http://www.foxriverwatch.com/superfund_sediment_remediation.html

http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/greatlakes/greenbay.html

http://www.sevenson.com/index.php/project-summaries/fox-river-superfund-site/

Appvion, Inc. (formerly Appleton Papers Inc.)

http://www.appvion.com/en-us

http://www.appvion.com

https://www.linkedin.com/company/appleton

Appleton Coated

http://www.appletoncoated.com/index.php?GroupID=11

http://www.appletoncoated.com

http://www.appletoncoated.com/greenzone/index.php

Info on lawsuits:

http://www.law360.com/articles/213303/gp-wants-ncr-to-pay-for-mich-superfund-site

http://www.law360.com/companies/ncr-corporation/articles

http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/index.ssf/2013/09/hold_portage_creek_pcb_cleanup_1.html

http://michiganradio.org/post/federal-regulators-say-pcb-cleanup-kalamazoo-river-gaining-momentum

http://michiganradio.org/post/pcb-cleanup-continues-along-kalamazoo-river

http://michiganradio.org/post/kalamazoo-residents-struggle-epa-over-mount-pcb

http://michiganradio.org/post/epa-says-decision-about-kalamazoo-s-mount-pcb-will-come-summer

http://michiganradio.org/post/kalamazoo-rallies-pressure-epa-remove-hazardous-paper-mill-waste

http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1144326/000114432613000031/R18.htm

On September 26, 2013, United States District Judge Robert J. Jonker ordered that Defendants NCR Corporation and International Paper Company are found liable parties

Other litigation issues remain:

American College of Environmental Lawyers (ACOEL)

http://www.acoel.org/file.axd?file=2013%2F10%2FGeorgia%2BPacific%2Bv%2BNCR.pdf

http://www.ncr.com/newsroom/resources/united-states-district-court-for-the-western-district-of-michigan-issues-decision-in-phase-i-of-kalamazoo-river-case

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site:

Hunsucker Goodstein Law

Federal Judge Finds NCR Corp. & Appleton Papers Inc. Liable For $950 Million in Cleanup Costs of Nation’s Largest Superfund Site (Mon, Oct. 3, 2011)

Philip Hunsucker

phunsucker@hgnlaw.com

(San Francisco, CA) – Federal judge rules NCR Corp. and Appleton Papers Inc. are liable for an estimated $950 million in cleanup costs and reimbursement of natural resource damages for PCB contamination at the nation’s largest Superfund site, located in eastern Wisconsin.

We are very pleased with this ruling,” said environmental attorney Philip Hunsucker, of Hunsucker Goodstein, who represented Menasha Corp.,

http://hgnlaw.com/about-us/news/bid/158025/Federal-Judge-Finds-NCR-Corp-Appleton-Papers-Inc-Liable-For-950-Million-in-Cleanup-Costs-of-Nation-s-Largest-Superfund-Site

http://www.pcmag.com/encyclopedia/term/47696/ncr-paper

Liberty Mutual Fights NCR On $79M Superfund Site Coverage

By Kathryn Brenzel

(March 28, 2013) – Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. on Wednesday urged a judge to declare that it doesn’t owe coverage to NCR Corp. for a $79 million cleanup of the Kalamazoo River Superfund site, saying the company’s comprehensive general liability policy wouldn’t cover costs stemming from its alleged role in the Michigan river’s pollution.

In a lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan, Liberty Mutual said it is not responsible for NCR’s portion of the cleanup and related defense costs, citing a pollution exception in the company’s insurance policy.

NCR was hit in 2010 by a suit from Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products LP, which sought contribution toward the cleanup of the Kalamazoo River, which cost Georgia-Pacific $79 million.

http://www.law360.com/articles/428041/liberty-mutual-fights-ncr-on-79m-superfund-site-coverage

http://www.epa.gov/region5/cleanup/foxriver/pdf/foxriver_cd_201010.pdf

Appleton Papers, Inc.

United States of America and the State of Wisconsin, Plaintiffs–Appellees, v. NCR Corporation, Defendant–Appellant

No. 12–2069 Decided: August 3, 2012

http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1608058.html

http://fox11online.com/2014/05/15/objections-filed-to-proposed-fox-river-cleanup-settlement

Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Lawsuit #13

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