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Indiana Dep't of Envtl. Management v. Raybestos Prods. Co.

ELR Citation: 38 ELR 20298
Nos. No. 49S02-0804-CV-183, (Ind., 12/09/2008)

The Indiana Supreme Court held that an agreed order for environmental cleanup between a manufacturing company and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) is an agency action governed by the Indiana Administrative Orders and Procedures Act, not a contract that will support a claim for damages against the state agency. Accordingly, the company may not proceed with its breach of contract claim against the agency for withdrawing its initial approval of the company's risk assessment and requesting EPA involvement in ordering a more stringent cleanup. The court also held that IDEM's communications with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) did not violate its agreed order with the company. At no time did IDEM promise not to involve EPA, and IDEM could not bind itself to fail to carry out its statutory obligations, including compliance with the federal regulations requiring communication between the agencies.