Cases & Deals

CenterPoint Energy Resources successfully defends against Superfund claims involving former manufactured gas plant facility in Bangor, Maine

Client(s) CenterPoint Energy Resources Corp.

Jones Day is representing CenterPoint Energy Resources Corp. ("CenterPoint") in defense of a claim brought by Frontier Communications Company for contribution to response costs under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act ("CERCLA" or "Superfund"). Frontier sought damages from CenterPoint pursuant to the United States Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Bestfoods as the corporate successor to a former parent corporation of the Bangor Gas Light Company. The claims sought environmental cleanup costs attributable to the operations of a former manufactured gas plant (MGP) facility owned and operated by Bangor Gas.

On August 14, 2009, the United States Magistrate Judge issued a Recommended Decision that the Court grant CenterPoint's Motion for Summary Judgment. On September 22, 2009, the Court accepted the Magistrate's recommendation and granted summary judgment to CenterPoint, finding that CenterPoint had not been directly involved in pollution related activities at the Bangor MGP and that the equities did not support piercing the corporate veil.

The claim against CenterPoint originally was asserted as a third party claim in 2003 in a case between the City of Bangor and Frontier. After the First Circuit approved a settlement among the State of Maine, the City and Frontier, the claims against CenterPoint and other third-party defendants continued in a new docket.

Frontier Communications Co. v. Barrett Paving Materials Inc., et al., Case No. 07-113-GZS (D. Me.)