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Need to Know

Audit Blasts Louisiana Tire Recycling Program

According to The Advocate, the most recent audit of Louisiana's Department of Environmental Quality’s Waste Tire Management Program concludes that a problem previously outlined by the auditor’s office still hasn’t been addressed, namely inadequate monitoring to make sure tire processors aren’t overpaid.

The failure of the program may have also contributed to the departure of a DEQ undersecretary, Vincent Sagnibene. After serving in the role for seven years, he had his appointment from the governor withdrawn in April, due to what department officials are calling “programmatic deficiencies.”

According to the report:

Under the program, a tire or mechanic shop that removes old tires from a vehicle collects a fee based on the size of the tires. Customers buying new tires pay fees of $2 for passenger cars or light trucks, $5 per medium truck tire and $10 per off road tire that go into a DEQ Waste Tire Management Fund. The used tires are then collected by another business that tears up the tires and sells them for DEQ pre-approved recycling projects, such as for fuel or playgrounds. Once that end-use sale goes through, DEQ pays the processor 7.5 cents per pound of tires from the DEQ tire fund. The program has paid $71.1 million to six waste tire processors between July 1, 2007, and June 30, 2014.
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