Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contact: Melissa Merz
877-844-5461 (TTY)

February 14, 2006


Springfield -- Attorney General Lisa Madigan today said a pesticide firm and one of its technicians will pay a civil penalty and provide funds to restore a city park under the terms of a settlement filed with the Illinois Pollution Control Board (IPCB).

The case stems from a September 2005 lawsuit filed by Madigan’s office at the request of the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) against Ecolab, Inc., and pesticide technician Charles A. Winslett of Pekin. They were charged with open dumping and creating a water pollution hazard after Winslett dumped a highly toxic pesticide along Hurt Road in South Pekin in October 2003.

According to Madigan’s lawsuit, Winslett had fumigated a Pontiac company with the pesticide Phostoxin, which is a highly toxic aluminum phosphide. The Tazewell County Sheriff’s office responded to a complaint of a vehicle bearing the word “Ecolab” on its side dumping a white power along the side of Hurt Road and observed the white substance, which was the fumigate and a non-toxic waste. The IEPA met with the sheriff’s department the following day; however, overnight rains had washed away the spent fumigate.

In admitting to the violations alleged in Madigan’s lawsuit, the defendants have agreed to pay a civil penalty of $2,500 within 30 days from the date the IPCB accepts the proposed settlement and perform a supplemental environmental project (SEP) valued at $10,000. The funds from the SEP will allow a local veterans’ organization and the Boy Scouts to restore a city park and playground in South Pekin that was severely damaged during a May 2004 tornado. Work will include painting and repairing playground equipment, installation of new park benches and fencing to fully enclose the park and seeding the site and planting trees. Ecolab and Winslett will remain in contact with the local groups to ensure that the work is completed.

Assistant Attorney General Kristen Laughridge Gale is handling the case for Madigan’s Environmental Protection Division.


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