Justice Department Seeks Cleanup Funds From Kmart

Date: August 8, 2002

Source: News Room

The U.S. Department of Justice wants $150 million from bankrupt Kmart to help pay for clean up of waste from the retailer's automotive centers. A Kmart sub-contractor hauled away hundreds of thousands of gallons of waste oil in past years from the auto centers. That waste oil found its way into facilities from Illinois to Tennessee to New England. Four of the sites the sub-contractor used were placed on the Superfund list, and the cleanup cost is estimated at $150 million. Kmart is one of five companies that the EPA is going after for reimbursement. But the government will have to stand in line with the retailer's other creditors while it tries to work its way out of bankruptcy. Kmart Corp. said in May that it lost $2.4 billion last fiscal year, more than 10 times what it reported the previous year. The retailer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Jan. 22, and has begun closing stores nationwide.

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