PO Box 88 ~ Glendale Springs, North Carolina 28629 ~ Phone (336) 982-2691 ~ Fax (336) 982-2954 ~ Email:


July 7, 2012

Beverly Kerr 336-376-9060

Judge Allows South Atlantic Galvanizing to Continue to Hide Information From The Public

Graham- On June 29, 2012, Superior Court Judge Howard E Manning ordered that the North Carolina Division of Air Quality (DAQ) keep documents confidential that were previously ruled to be public by that agency. The judge’s order was contrary to the arguments made by the NC Attorney General’s office and the North Carolina Environmental Management Commission, which supported DAQ. The judge ruled that, although emissions information was public information, it would be unfair to South Atlantic Galvanizing to release the documents, despite State and Federal law.

Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League’s Communications Director Beverly Kerr questioned the ruling saying, “We are disappointed with the judge’s decision. There is no statute of limitation upon obtaining public records. Judge Manning acknowledges that air pollution facts are public information. The company’s excuse, that they sent the information to DAQ voluntarily and that the results were not used to decide whether SAG needed a permit, just do not make a difference. The law flatly prohibits keeping emissions data secret.”

Kerr continued, “We applaud the NC Division of Air Quality, The Attorney General’s office, and the North Carolina Environmental Management Commission for their correct application of public records law to this case. It begs the question: Why has South Atlantic Galvanizing spent so much money on this and what are they trying to hide? Is there more information buried at the Division of Air Quality that will give us a better picture of what is going on? This is not the end of our concern, or our vigilance.”