EPA withdraws complaint against Tennessee lawmaker

by MEAT+POULTRY Staff
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NASHVILLE – The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) dropped a complaint against Tennessee Rep. Andy Holt whom the agency claimed discharged waste from his family owned hog farm, Holt Family Farms, without a permit, the Associated Press reported. The agency had been seeking $177,500 in penalties from Holt.

The agency’s complaint, which was filed in August 2015, alleged that Holt discharged more than 860,000 gallons from lagoons on the 1,500-head swine farm. However, Holt said he reported the incident after an “historic” heavy rainfall, Holt said in a statement on his website.

Andy Holt, Tennessee
Andy Holt, Tennessee state representative

“We self-reported all of this to the state and were cleared to discharge,” Holt said. “Nothing was ever hidden or kept secret. I did exactly what the state told me to do.”

EPA filed a motion on March 24 to drop the complaint after Holt agreed to close two lagoons on his property, although the EPA reserved the right to refile the complaint if Holt fails to comply with the agreement.

“This has been an interesting process,” Holt said. “I’m thankful for those that have stood by my family and me over the past several months.”

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