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ANTI-SMOG RULES VIOLATIONS BY MASONITE PROMPT AIR RESOURCES BOARD LAWSUIT

 ANTI-SMOG RULES VIOLATIONS BY MASONITE
 PROMPT AIR RESOURCES BOARD LAWSUIT
 SACRAMENTO, Calif., July 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Cal/EPA's Air Resources Board and the Attorney General announced today that they have filed a civil lawsuit in Mendocino County Superior Court against Masonite Corp. alleging the company operated a manufacturing line at the plant without appropriate permits, and failed to file reports on its emissions.
 The suit was filed in conjunction with a similar action by the Mendocino County Air Pollution Control District.
 In announcing the lawsuit filing, James M. Strock, California Secretary for Environmental Protection, said "Masonite's failure to comply with our environmental laws places the many California companies that obey the rules at a competitive disadvantage. By this action we intend to level the playing field."
 In its suit, the ARB alleges that Masonite operated a molded door manufacturing line at its facility from February 1990 to January 1991, without notifying the county air pollution control district and without appropriate county permits, which resulted in gross violations of air quality standards. These violations caused numerous citizen complaints.
 The suit also charges that Masonite failed for more than a year to file an inventory of its toxic emissions, required of all major industrial facilities under the state's 1988 "Toxic Hotspots" law. Furthermore, the ARB charges that Masonite was well aware of the reporting requirement since it was notified of the obligation on several occasions by the Mendocino County Air Pollution Control District.
 The ARB noted that those emissions were not illegal, but failing to file the report that accounts for them is considered a serious breach of a disclosure law that gave Masonite an unfair competitive business advantage.
 The report, which inventories hundreds of chemical compounds, was not filed until November, 1990, despite a deadline of August, 1989.
 -0- 7/30/92
 /CONTACT: Chris Peck of Cal/EPA, 916-324-9670; or Bill Sessa of ARB 916-322-2990/ CO: Cal/EPA; Air Resources Board ST: California IN: SU:


MM -- SF009 -- 5404 07/30/92 21:08 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 30, 1992
Words:332
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