MDEQ to Host VW Trust Funds Public Meetings in April

From:  News Release   3/30/18   GCN

(JACKSON, Miss.) – The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) has scheduled three meetings to garner input from the public on the state’s proposed mitigation plan that will spend funds allocated to the state from the Volkswagen Diesel Settlement.

Gov. Phil Bryant has designated MDEQ as the agency to administer the state’s portion of the funds ($9,874,414 out of the $2.9 billion Environmental Mitigation Trust) to implement air emissions reduction projects. The funds from the trust will be used to fund mitigation projects to replace older diesel emission sources with cleaner technology to reduce excess nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions and improve air quality in Mississippi.

The meetings are scheduled for:

•April 11 at 1:30 p.m. in MDEQ’s Commission Hearing Room located at 515 East Amite Street, Jackson, 39201.

•April 18 at 1:30 p.m. at the Batesville Public Library, 206 Highway 51 North, Batesville, 38606.  •April 24 at 1:30 p.m. in the Public Meeting Room of the Bolton State Office Building, 1141 Bayview Avenue, Biloxi, 39530.

Each meeting will include an informational presentation from MDEQ staff and an opportunity for the public to provide input. The public can also submit input, find out more information, and sign up for an email distribution list at https://www.mdeq.ms.gov/air/vw-mitigation-trust/. The deadline for submitting input is May 18, 2018.

Each of the states involved in the litigation will receive settlements based on the number of offending vehicles registered in that state. VW established the Mitigation Trust Fund, in part, to settle claims under the Clean Air Act that it sold vehicles with “defeat devices” designed to cheat emissions tests for its diesel vehicles.