LOGANSPORT, Ind. (WLFI) - Plaintiffs who lost their trees to the herbicide Imprelis could be notified of a settlement next week. It's the next step in an ongoing federal class action lawsuit against the major chemical manufacturer DuPont.
In the summer of 2011, the Logansport law firm Starr Austen & Miller LLP filed a class action lawsuit.
"We were contacted by a corporation that owns a number of golf courses in the central Indiana area that had applied Imprelis to their golf courses and suffered hundreds and hundreds of tree deaths as a result," said attorney Andrew Miller.
Those golf courses in Indiana were not the only ones affected. Miller said many people across the nation filed lawsuits on the basis that Imprelis had killed thousands of trees. He said the cases were consolidated in federal court in Philadelphia.
Just last month, the court gave preliminary approval for a fair settlement that has been negotiated with DuPont.
"The next step is on March 25. That's the date by which DuPont will begin notifying all of the affected people, affected properties of the settlement," said Miller.
But Miller said the affected people won't see their settlement money until September, when a final approval hearing will take place.
"Frankly, what people are interested in is, 'When are we going to get a check, that we can choose to either replace the trees or just get on down the road and be done with this?'" said Miller.
Coyote Crossing and Battle Ground Golf Club also fell victim to Imprelis. However, they were not part of the class action lawsuit and settled with DuPont directly.
As News 18 reported last week, Battle Ground already received nearly $500,000 and Coyote Crossing is still wrapping up its settlement.
Miller said the amount of money people will get in the settlement depends on the size of the tree. Some trees at Coyote Crossing and Battle Ground were worth $10,000.
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The city of Kokomo has purchased a former steel plant site that has undergone years of environmental cleanup and plans to use the land to try to reduce damage from future flooding.
Rural and volunteer fire departments in 14 southern Indiana counties are getting a boost from a share of more than $314,000 generated by the sale of trees felled in some of the state's forests.