Karnes man hit with TCEQ fine for dumping, burning tires

Sara  Sneath By Sara Sneath

March 26, 2014 at 6:04 p.m.
Updated March 26, 2014 at 10:27 p.m.

A Karnes County man was fined $36,750 by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality for improper disposal of waste, including more than 1,000 used or scrap tires.

Nathan Bruton was paid to dispose of the tires but instead dumped them on his own land on County Road 192 in Karnes County, said Thomas Greimel, TCEQ enforcement coordinator.

The tires do not pose an immediate human health risk, said Andrea Morrow, TCEQ spokeswoman.

From July 13 to Aug. 23, 2011, Bruton dumped 1,090 used or scrap tires on his land. An additional 441 tires were disposed of at the site between Sept. 21 to Oct. 19, 2011, according to the TCEQ executive summary.

In addition to the tires, Bruton disposed of 1,000 cubic yards of brush, household trash, foam insulation, railroad ties and construction and demolition debris at the site. A TCEQ investigation also found tires and other waste were burned on Bruton's land.

Bruton received the TCEQ findings by certified mail Nov. 12, 2013, and did not respond or request a hearing. TCEQ approved the $36,750 fine Wednesday. An order for corrective action will be drafted in the next two weeks, at which point Bruton will have the opportunity to contest the order or file a motion to reconsider, Morrow said.

If Bruton does neither, he will have 90 days from the date of the order to remove the tires and other waste or he faces litigation, she said.



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