Lyons Quoted on DOJ Policy Extending Civil Penalty Payment Deadlines

The Hill

Partner Francis Lyons, a former U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) environmental enforcement attorney and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regional administrator, was quoted on the DOJ’s temporary pass to companies that are required to make civil penalty payments to the federal government.

The DOJ said that the move is intended to “mitigate the financial impact” of the coronavirus and has extended the policy at least until June 1, 2020. The policy includes companies who owe penalties ranging from small amounts up to tens of millions of dollars, which Frank believes is too broad.

 “It's unprecedented in how broad it is,” he said. “I think this policy goes beyond what is necessary under the circumstances.”

Frank added that DOJ enforcement personnel already have the power to grant relief for companies that can show they are facing financial hardships, which is part of the reason he believes the new policy is unnecessarily broad.

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