Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller has filed an environmental enforcement lawsuit in Winnebago County District Court against Golden Oval Eggs for environmental violations. Attorney General spokesman, Bob Brammer, says the lawsuit alleges that the Golden Oval egg-production facility has violated the environmental laws with several water pollution infractions.
He says the facility that has a capacity of up to five-point-seven million chickens has had numerous notices of violations from the state. He says with the company continues to apparently violate the law despite saying they would remedy the situation, and the state is suing seeking civil penalties which are punishable by up to five-thousand dollars per day per violation. Brammer says Golden Oval violated the requirements of their waste permit numerous times.
He says the company has a permit to treat the wastes and then discharge the treated wastewater into the Winnebago River, but Brammer says the lawsuit alleges the company has frequently exceeded the limits in the discharge permit. Brammer says the lawsuit was filed after the Iowa Environmental Protection Commission referred the matter to the Attorney General’s Office after Golden Oval continued to violate the limits for its wastewater treatment facility from October through December of 2006.
Brammer says the DNR took numerous administrative measures and the EPC then asked the Attorney General to take legal action and ask a court to issue civil penalties. Golden Oval’s 22-barn facility is located near Thompson.
A written statement by Golden Oval says the company will continue to work cooperatively and proactively with the Attorney General and the Iowa D-N-R to resolve the compliance issues as soon as possible. Golden Oval President Dana Persson says the company regrets the problems at the wastewater treatment facility have happened, and the company has been meeting with the D-N-R on trying to agree on an aggressive timetable to construct permanent wastewater improvements.