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Office of the Vermont Attorney General

Court Orders Clean-Up And $20,000 In Penalties Against Former Milton Junkyard Owner For Environmental Violations

October 14, 2011

CONTACT: Robert F. McDougall, Assistant Attorney General, (802) 828-3186

The Vermont Superior Court, Chittenden Unit, ordered former junkyard owner Gilbert Rhoades to clean-up the Milton site following its finding of environmental violations earlier this year, including removal of all tires at the site within 90 days. The Court ordered Rhoades to pay $20,000 in civil penalties and Rhoades and his wife, Blanche Rhoades, to reimburse the State $24,857.58 for past investigative costs. The Court’s ruling follows a May 11th hearing in an environmental enforcement action brought by the Attorney General’s Office based on inspections by the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources.

“This ruling sends a strong message that, although salvage yards can provide valuable services to the community, owners of such operations must follow Vermont’s environmental laws and operate in a safe manner,” said Attorney General William H. Sorrell.

In addition to ordering the removal of all tires at the site within 90 days, the Court ordered:

  • permanently enjoined Rhoades from operating a junkyard or salvage yard at the site without first obtaining all necessary permits and licenses;
  • ordered Rhoades to comply with all statutes and regulations governing the handling of hazardous waste;
  • ordered additional soil sampling and removal of lead contaminated soil;
  • ordered Rhoades and his wife Blanche to reimburse the State for $24,857 in past investigative costs; and
  • ordered Rhoades to pay the State $20,000 in civil penalties.

Since November 2009, the Rhoades have been subject to a preliminary injunction prohibiting them from taking in any new junk, including scrap metal, at the site.

Related documents:

Ruling on Damages
Ruling on the Merits (February 9, 2011)
Ruling on Cross Motions for Summary Judgment (November 20, 2009)
Ruling on Motion for Preliminary Injunction (November 20, 2009)

Last modified: March 15, 2018