Suarez statement on Chemetco

By The Madison County Record | Oct 2, 2014

To the Editor:

Chemetco was owned by a man with the same last name as my husband. He is a distant cousin with no ongoing relationship to our family. I have never been involved in Chemetco in any way. I have never even stepped foot on Chemetco property. The implication that I am an insider is far-fetched and absurd. Prenzler is grasping at straws when he brings up anyone with the last name of Suarez in a fruitless attempt to pollute my reputation. This is another feeble attempt to deflect attention away from his own illegal and unethical behavior.

Furthermore, the fact that Chemetco owes Madison County back taxes is not related to me. My husband and I have never had any ownership or fiduciary relationship to Chemetco. Neither has any business that we own. Once again, Prenzler is making a reckless attempt to connect my good name to someone named Suarez in an attempt to discredit me.

EPA correspondence with B. Garcia Trucking

The EPA has NOT identified B. Garcia Trucking as being responsible for any cleanup at Chemetco. The EPA has contacted 115 companies, including B. Garcia Trucking, that provided trucking services or raw materials to Chemetco in a routine inquiry to determine if they provided any hazardous material. Since B. Garcia Trucking delivered sand to Chemetco, we are confident that the EPA will not find us responsible for any clean up costs. We have provided the EPA with that documentation. Except for routine updates and correspondence sent to all 115 parties, we have not heard anything directly from the EPA on this matter. This is a routine type of inquiry conducted by the EPA in order to find potentially responsible parties. We are confident that B. Garcia Trucking will not be found responsible in any way.

Accusations of fraudulent transfer

As stated above, B. Garcia Trucking provided trucking services to Chemetco. The trustee appointed in the bankruptcy matter alleged my husband received preferential payments of his bills for these trucking services because of his relationship with the owner of Chemetco. The legal term used to identify those who may have received these types of payments is “insider." It is a legal term used in bankruptcy court that does not imply ownership, control or management of the bankrupt entity. The trucking company vehemently fought this and later entered into a settlement with the trustee. There were absolutely no accusations of fraud, or criminal conduct or any type of wrongdoing. In fact, my husband is a victim of the Chemetco bankruptcy himself. He has his own claim against Chemetco for services he rendered during a short term of employment there. He was not employed there during the actions that resulted in the EPA violations. B. Garcia Trucking is also a victim of Chemetco’s bankruptcy. To this day, they are still owed money for services that were provided to Chemetco but never paid for. I was wrongly named as an “insider” - perhaps because my name was on B. Garcia Trucking loan documents. That suit was dismissed by the bankruptcy trustee in 2005.

Marleen Suarez

Candidate for Madison County Treasurer

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