Report: Harley won’t have to pay part of EPA settlement

DOJ blocking third-party payments in settlements

Harley-Davidson headquarters
Harley-Davidson Inc.'s headquarters in Milwaukee.

Milwaukee-based Harley-Davidson Inc. will not have to spend $3 million to reduce air pollution as part of a previously announced settlement with the Environmental Protection Agency, according to a Reuters report.

Harley-Davidson headquarters
Harley-Davidson Inc.’s headquarters in Milwaukee.

The news agency says “sources briefed on the matter” indicated the U.S. Justice Department would announce this week that it would drop the requirement that the motorcycle maker spend $3 million with the American Lung Association of the Northeast to retrofit or replace wood-burning appliances.

Harley agreed to pay a $12 million civil penalty last year after the EPA accused the company of selling tuners that could allow engines to emit higher amounts of certain air pollutants. Harley was to stop sales of the device, buy back and destroy existing ones and mitigate pollution with the $3 million project.

Reuters pointed out that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions last month barred legal settlements in federal cases “that include donating funds to community organizations or other third-party groups, rather than paying those directly harmed by the wrongdoing or involved in the cases.”

A federal judge will still need to sign off on the revised settlement.

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Arthur covers banking and finance and the economy at BizTimes while also leading special projects as an associate editor. He also spent five years covering manufacturing at BizTimes. He previously was managing editor at The Waukesha Freeman. He is a graduate of Carroll University and did graduate coursework at Marquette. A native of southeastern Wisconsin, he is also a nationally certified gymnastics judge and enjoys golf on the weekends.

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