The Department of Environmental Conservation announced today that it has formally settled a series of environmental violations against Willie Noyes. Mr. Noyes owns and operates Willie’s Village Auto located at 100 Weeks Hill Road in Stowe. The settlement includes an $18,000 penalty.
Department personnel discovered the environmental violations during a series of site visits from August of 2014 to November of 2015. During these visits, Department personnel observed that Mr. Noyes was failing to store spent lead acid batteries under cover and on impervious surface. They also observed that he was failing to store used oil in properly marked, closed, and well-maintained containers also on impervious surface and under cover. In addition, they observed several areas of soil that had been stained from unauthorized discharges of used oil and potentially other hazardous waste. Finally, Department personnel observed that, based on the number of junk motor vehicles located at Mr. Noyes’s property, he was operating a salvage yard without obtaining the Agency’s approval.
These actions and inactions were violations of Vermont’s Hazardous Waste Management Regulations and statutes and its salvage yard statutes. These laws protect public health and the environment by ensuring both that hazardous wastes are properly collected, transported, stored, and disposed of and that salvage yards don’t have unfavorable effects on Vermont’s groundwater and natural environment or otherwise become a nuisance.
After being notified of these violations, Mr. Noyes retained an environmental consultant to help bring his business into compliance with Vermont’s Hazardous Waste Management Regulations and implement a soil sampling plan in response to the hazardous waste discharges. However, the Agency observed additional violations after this consultant completed his work. Mr. Noyes later agreed to settle the matter. The settlement was reduced to an Assurance of Discontinuance, and adopted as an order by the Environmental Court. As part of the settlement, Mr. Noyes admitted to the violations, including operating a salvage yard without proper approval. The settlement requires Mr. Noyes to pay an $18,000 penalty and abide by a series of compliance directives designed to cure and prevent future environmental violations. A copy of the settlement between the Department and Mr. Noyes, as approved by the Environmental Court, can be found on the Department’s website.
“Vermont’s Hazardous Waste Management Regulations protect Vermonters and Vermont’s environmental resources,” said Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner, Alyssa Schuren. “Those who violate them and who fail to come into compliance in a timely manner do a disservice to their fellow Vermonters and can expect to pay a penalty commensurate with their behavior.”
Evan Meenan, Attorney Agency of Natural Resources