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Nixon Vetoes Legal Shield For Old Lead Mines

Posted: Jul 12, 2013 1:25 PM by The Associated Press
Updated: Jul 12, 2013 2:09 PM

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JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Gov. Jay Nixon has vetoed legislation that would have shielded a Missouri lead mining company from punitive damages in some contamination lawsuits.

Nixon said he rejected the bill Friday because it would have carved out an exemption for a particular industry and applied retroactively to lawsuits that already had been filed.

The measure would have protected Doe Run Resources Corp. from punitive damages in lead-illness lawsuits if a judge determines it is making "good faith" efforts to clean up contaminated mining sites. It would not have capped legal awards for other categories of damages such as medical costs or lost wages.

Doe Run has been working with the Environmental Protection Agency to clean up old sites in St. Francois County but currently faces 11 lawsuits related to them.

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