86-Year-Old Rancher Faces $300,000 in Fines


The following article was published Thursday on the Willamette Week’s website.

by Hannah Hoffman

Attorney General John Kroger, who campaigned on a promise to put environmental polluters behind bars, has doubled his count of jailed polluters: The total is now two.

Kroger’s office prosecuted an 86-year-old Columbia County cattle rancher for dumping manure in Muddy Creek and South Scappoose Creek, tributaries of the Columbia River, and operating his farm without proper permits.

The farmer, William Holdner, was sentenced to 5 days in jail, fine up up to $300,000 and told he had to shut down his cattle business.

When Kroger ran for office in 2008, he promised to go after major polluters. A WW story uncovered that as of November, only one person had gone to jail—a landscaper who did two days in the Marion County jail for dumping dirt and debris on his foreclosed property.

Holdner is the second person Kroger has put in jail for polluting while getting at least five convictions in other cases.

Holdner may only owe $75,000 if he complies with some conditions.

In a press release announcing the conviction, Kroger says, “Oregon has always been a nationwide leader in environmental protection. This sentence sends an important message: polluting Oregon rivers is not acceptable.”

“Prosecuting cases like this ensures that businesses who comply with environmental laws are not at a competitive disadvantage,” Kroger says.


Source:  Willamette Week

Posted by Haylie Shipp


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