MSHA Going After More Delinquent Fines
Posted by Ellen Smith on July 13, 2012
MSHA announced that it’s going after 3 operators in New England for delinquent fines.
The first complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut against American Industries Inc. in Jewett City, Conn., seeks to collect unpaid civil penalties of $24,628 assessed against the construction sand and gravel operation, plus interest.
The second complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts against R.J. Cincotta Co. Inc. in Waltham, Mass., seeks $144,847 in unpaid civil penalties assessed against the crushed stone operation, plus interest.
The third complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire against Raymond Sand and Gravel in Raymond, N.H., seeks $98,249 in unpaid civil penalties assessed against the sand and gravel operation, plus interest.
The suits were filed by the Labor Department’s Regional Office of the Solicitor in Boston.
For too long, the issue of delinquent fines has been ignored by the government. I have no sympathy in these cases.
One does not need an attorney for these cases. The Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission judges give a lot of leeway to operators who are representing themselves. The judges are also extremely gracious in reducing penalties when operators offer proof that they could be put out of business under the computer-generated penalties that MSHA proposes.
There is no excuse to ignore citations and ignore penalties.
The “level playing field” is that each operator has to be responsible.