A Maryland-based waste disposal company has paid a hefty fine of $78,702 to the District of Columbia to settle a complaint filed by the district’s Office of the Attorney General (OAG) for disturbing residents by collecting trash early in the morning and late at night.
The settlement concludes an earlier lawsuit filed by the OAG against Bates Trucking Company Inc. for violating several regulations. This includes disregarding the district’s noise ordinance by collecting trash before 7 am, operating without a valid license, refusing to pay fines, and ignoring numerous enforcement notices from the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA).
The OAG filed suit after an investigation brought on by a DRCA referral and when it received complaints from residents, including those who live in Dupont Circle and Logan Circle.
“District law requires businesses that haul trash to possess valid licenses, operate only during certain time periods, and promptly pay any and all fines imposed on them,” said Attorney General Karl A. Racine. He also reassured his constituents that the recent settlement held Bates Trucking Company accountable for disobeying the law.
District regulations state that DRCA-licensed companies in the trash collection business are not allowed to operate between 9 pm and 7 am to avoid disturbing residents. If businesses do not comply, the DCRA can pass the issue on to the OAG, which can then file a lawsuit against the company.
DCRA Director Ernest Chrappah said, “While cases against companies like Bates Trucking Company may take some time to resolve, we want to send a clear message to business owners who are operating without the proper licenses and not following the regulations set forth by the District government that their actions will not be tolerated.”
The fine collection will go to the District’s General Fund and since the lawsuit, Bates Trucking has obtained a valid license from the DCRA.