A lawsuit is back at the county level alleging lengthy contamination from the Milford Proving Grounds.

The lawsuit, which represents several dozen Brighton Township residents, alleges contamination of the plaintiffs’ groundwater and that GM committed fraud by concealing its knowledge of the contamination. The suit had initially been filed in Livingston County Circuit Court, but was later moved to U.S. District Court in Detroit after GM asserted that the claims were covered under its 2009 bankruptcy. That’s when the plaintiffs’ attorney, Alexander Memmen, filed an amended complaint based solely on state law, which has resulted in a decision to return the case to the circuit court level. A status conference on the lawsuit is now set for September 25th in front of Judge Michael Hatty.

Compensation is being sought for property damage and personal injury caused by GM’s alleged pollution and for the cost of obtaining drinkable water. GM maintains the suit has no merit as salt deposits naturally occur in the area, adding that salt usage at the Milford Proving Grounds has been significantly reduced. Memmen tells WHMI the contamination dates back to at least 1985 and GM has literally been pouring tons of salt onto its property. He says the contamination has spread to nearby wells and the salt levels are way above the state and federal threshold considered safe for human consumption. (JK)