A company in the Matty MOROUN portfolio has paid the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) $100,000 to settle a lawsuit over gas sales that allegedly violated state law.
A settlement agreement effective Feb. 1, 2013, stipulated that Ammex pay MDARD a $100,000 economic benefit fee within 30 days. MDARD spokeswoman Jennifer HOLTON said the fine had been paid. It goes to the department’s gas inspection fund.
The original violations, documented through samples taken from 2009 to 2012, were twofold.
One was higher-than-normal vapor ratings during the summer months, which meant more fuel vapor was entering the air, negatively affecting the environment.
The other violation had to do with octane levels: Ammex pumps were selling fuel with lower octane than advertised. Premium gas, for example, was labeled at 93 octane but really measured 91.4 octane during a May 2012 inspection.
After the company failed to respond to a stop sale order issued June 21, 2012, MDARD filed suit (See “Ag Department Pops Moroun For Selling Substandard Gas,” 10/25/12).
The settlement, which was executed in February, extends until 2016. If MDARD finds additional violations in this time period, the department can enforce those, as well. However, an MDARD inspection in June of 2013 determined the company was in compliance.
Under the agreement, MDARD will be allowed to view and copy all the paperwork related to receipt, transfer, delivery, storage and sale of gasoline by Ammex.
The company could also face up to $200,000 in further fines over a series of years if it fails to comply with the settlement agreement.
Ammex in the settlement denied liability in the matter, “as well as the applicability of the Motor Fuels Quality Act to the sale of fuel by Ammex.”
Originally posted by MIRS News.