BROOKSVILLE — A local trash hauler will agree to pay an $11,000 fine after a state environmental agency found an illegal transfer station at its facility east of Brooksville.
Joseph Puglia, president of Big Redd Carting, met with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection earlier this week after receiving a letter in May warning that he violated solid waste permitting rules. In an interview after the meeting, he said he would pay the fine to close the matter quickly.
"Anytime you are talking about money in these economic times it's definitely debilitating," he said of the fine.
Puglia acknowledged operating a garbage transfer station, which needs a state permit, in the Cortez Boulevard facility when two of his trucks broke down. "They were in agreement that we were painted into a corner and had to do something," he said.
Pamala Vazquez, an agency spokeswoman, said officials gave the company a week to consider its options after the Tuesday enforcement meeting. The agency will also seek a consent order to formalize the violations and agreement. "We appreciate this company cooperating," she said.
Big Redd collects garbage at about 400 commercial sites in Hernando and Sumter counties and 300 homes in Sumter County, which does not have mandatory collection. Puglia, who ran for the state Legislature in 2008, recently sold his majority stake in the company to JLMM, FL Holdings.
John Frank can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (352) 754-6114.