PO Box 1070, Frankfort, KY 40602 Phone 502.875.2428, Fax 502.875.2845
JUDGE REJECTS MOTION TO DISMISS SUIT CHALLENGING AGREED ORDER BETWEEN DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY AND STATE CABINET ON PADUCAH PLANT Posted: July 8, 2004
When the Department of Energy and the state Environmental and Public Protection Cabinet made a deal resolving DOE's numerous violations of environmental laws at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion plant, local residents Ron Lamb, Vivian and Al Puckett, and local activist Mark Donham challenged those two "Agreed Orders" which allowed DOE to avoid strict application of hazardous waste laws to the legacy of mismanaged wastes present on and under the DOE plant property.
DOE asked the Court to dismiss the case, arguing that the case should have been first filed before the agency even though the Cabinet Secretary had already signed the Agreed Orders as final orders of the agency.
On July 1, Franklin Circuit Court Judge Crittenden rejected the efforts to dismiss the case, holding that exhausting administrative remedies is not necessary where to do so would be an exercise in futility. The case now moves to the merits, where Plaintiffs will challenge the Agreed Orders as unlawful departures from proper management and regulation of hazardous wastes at the facility.
Plaintiffs Lamb, Puckett and Donham are represented by KRC.