Demolition dumping brings $49k fine

Illegal dumping of Christchurch demolition waste on a Leeston farm has brought fines totalling $49,000 for Christchurch firm Pollard Contracting and its director Craig Pollard.

The company, known as Polcon, was fined $34,000 and Pollard was fined $15,000.

Judge John Hassan said at the Christchurch District Court sentencing that he would allow the fines to be paid in instalments.

Pollard declined to comment to media after today's sentencing on charges relating to the dumping of 68 loads of demolition waste on a farm owned by Oakleigh Innovation, and discharging contaminants into the air by burning the waste.

Oakleigh has already been fined $27,000.

Pollard said the dumping at the farm was done at the weekends because the work involved school sites and could only go on at the weekends when landfills were closed.

Judge Hassan said Pollard had showed a significant lack of care which demonstrated "delinquency in the management of your business".

He had a responsibility to make inquiries to ensure the business was operating lawfully. He was the primary instigator and driver of the offending.

The dumping over 17 months had not caused any detected contamination or effects on waterways, aquifers, plants or animals so far, and there was no evidence of complaints from neighbours.

It showed a continuing pattern of corner-cutting in earthquake demolition work. Demolition contractors had a stewardship responsibility, he said.

He noted that remedial work had since been done by Oakleigh, but Pollard had so far made no offer of any contribution towards that.

Pollard and his firm had removed the burned waste to a lawful landfill at a cost of $23,000 since ECan's involvement. This was an acknowledgement of what they were required to do all along.

The Press