CONTACT: Evan Meenan, Assistant Attorney General, (802) 828-5512, Robert McDougall, Assistant Attorney General, (802) 828-3186
Expert Drain Care, LLC, a Brattleboro-based corporation that does business as Roto Rooter and Monadnock Septic, was convicted of three felony environmental crimes in Vermont Superior Court, Brattleboro Criminal Division last week. Pursuant to a plea agreement with the Vermont Attorney General’s Office, Expert Drain Care pled no contest to one count of transportation of solid waste without a permit, one count of illegal disposal of solid waste, and one count of false claims. In addition to the three felony convictions, Expert Drain Care must pay a $5,000.00 fine and related court costs.
“This business tried to cut a few corners to save a few hundred dollars on permit fees and ended up with three felony convictions and thousands of dollars in fines,” said Attorney General William H. Sorrell. “Vermont businesses should be on notice that we take the enforcement of Vermont’s environmental laws and regulations very seriously,” he added.
The charges stem from an investigation conducted by the Attorney General’s Office and the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources in 2013. The investigation related to disposal of solid waste by Expert Drain Care at properties in Brattleboro. The investigation revealed that Expert Drain Care had been illegally transporting solid waste in Vermont without a permit on June 14, 2013 when it transported approximately 8,330 pounds of dairy waste, including cheese waste, from the Grafton Cheese Factory to the Expert Drain Care facility on Canal Street. Dairy waste is considered solid waste under Vermont law. At the Canal Street facility, Expert Drain Care disposed of solid waste onto the ground, in violation of Vermont statute and the Vermont Solid Waste Management Rules. Additionally, to avoid fees for renewing its state permit, which expired in 2009, Expert Drain Care made false claims to the Agency of Natural Resources by misrepresenting in its Residuals Management Quarterly Reports that it was not managing or disposing of solid waste in Vermont.
“Knowingly placing human health and the environment at risk through the transportation and illegal disposal of food waste and septage in order to maximize profits is precisely the sort of violations that are appropriate for criminal prosecution,” said DEC Commissioner David Mears. “A criminal outcome sends the proper message to them and to others who work in this area that serious consequences will be the result for this kind of violation,” Mears added.
Last modified: March 14, 2018