Cache County officials say they will do all they can to recover at least part of a $220,000 fine leveled against E.A. Miller and Sons Inc. for state pollution violations.
The move to retrieve the money is spearheaded by Carol Clay, former member of the Logan Municipal Council and wife of a longtime executive at the Hyrum meatpacking company, John Clay.She said Friday that she had been told by state officials that money from such fines traditionally has gone to the state Department of Health or into the state's general fund.
The fine paid by Miller on April 24 was described by Fred Pehrson of Utah Bureau of Water Pollution Control as "the largest fine ever imposed by the state for pollution violations."
Pehrson said at the time the order was issued that Miller had a long history of violations.
Clay said that in issuing the fine, the state inferred that local damage had occurred because of the violations.
"The revenue to pay the fine was generated here, and if the damage occurred here, this is where the money should go," she said.
Clay also said the company, Cache County's largest private employer, is spending up to $2 million to prevent future pollution problems.
She estimated the cost of enforcement to the state should not exceed $20,000. For the whole $220,000 to go into state coffers would be wrong, Clay said.
Clay said she has enlisted state Sen. Lyle Hillyard and state Rep. Frank Prante, both of Logan.
Cache County Executive Bruce King said the county attorney's office will "definitely follow through" on Clay's suggestion.