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E-M:/ Judge: Kolke cleanup permit was illegal

GAYLORD -- Kolke Creek defenders won another battle.

A circuit court judge reversed a decision made by a state administrative law judge in a long-running conflict about whether to allow treated water from a contaminated groundwater plume to be dumped into a headwaters creek of the Au Sable River.

Judge Dennis Murphy ruled this week that the state Department of Environmental Quality illegally issued a cleanup permit to Merit Energy in March 2005. The ruling by Murphy, of the 46th Circuit Court, reversed a May 2006 decision of state Administrative Law Judge Richard Lacasse.

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