CAR_Public/130405.mbx             C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R

              Friday, April 5, 2013, Vol. 15, No. 67

                             Headlines



COMCAST CORP: Weil Gotshal Discusses Supreme Court Ruling
COMMUNITY BANK: Unit Agrees to Settle Class Suit for $2.5-Mil.
DEUTSCHE BANK: Judge Allows MBS Fraud Class Action to Proceed
FIRST MIDWEST: Appeal Taken Over Dismissal of Overdraft Fees Suit
FORD MOTOR: Sued Over Unintended Acceleration Defects

GIFT SHOP: Recalls Food Products Due to Undeclared Allergens
GREAT LAKES: Glancy Binkow & Goldberg Files Class Action
HEALTHCARE REVENUE: TCPA Suit Obtains Class Certification
HEARTLAND GOURMET: Recalls Gluten Free Chip & Pizza Crust Mixes
LI-ION BATTERY MAKERS: Hagens Berman Seeks Class Counsel Status

LIFESTYLE EVOLUTION: Recalls NuGO FREE, Dark and Slim Bars
LISY CORP: Recalls Five Seasoning Blends on Undeclared Soy
MAXWELL TECHNOLOGIES: Glancy Binkow & Goldberg Files Class Action
MERRILL LYNCH: Appeals From Dismissal of Antitrust Suits Pending
MERRILL LYNCH: Awaits Final Okay of "Chambers" Suit Settlement

MERRILL LYNCH: Final Hearing on Securities Suit Deal on April 5
MGM RESORTS: Bid to Dismiss Securities Suit Remains Pending
NATURA PET: Recalls Dry Pet Foods Due to Possible Health Risk
OLD REPUBLIC: Continues to Defend "Barker" Class Suit vs. ORHP
OLD REPUBLIC: Continues to Defend Two Class Suits vs. ORNTIC

OLD REPUBLIC: Defends "Friedman" Suit vs. ORHP in California
OLD REPUBLIC: Defends 9 Class Suits Alleging RESPA Violations
OLD REPUBLIC: "Painter" Class Suit vs. Units Remains Pending
OLD REPUBLIC: Reached Tentative Deal to Settle "Hinrichs" Suit
PFIZER INC: Shareholders' Arthritis Drug Class Action Can Proceed

PNC FINANCIAL: Awaits Final Okay of Interchange Fees Suit Deal
PNC FINANCIAL: Awaits Ruling on Plea to Dismiss "White" Suit
PNC FINANCIAL: Continues to Defend Mortgage Suits in Penn. & N.C.
PNC FINANCIAL: Continues to Defend Overdraft Litigation vs. Banks
PNC FINANCIAL: "DK&D" Class Suit vs. Unit Dismissed in November

PORTFOLIO RECOVERY: Lemberg Wins $350,000 Class Action Award
PUBLIX SUPER: Recalls Publix Deli Tri Fruit and Grain Salad
RESEARCH IN MOTION: Judge Tosses Shareholder Class Action
RICH PRODUCTS: E. Coli Sparks Farm Rich, Market Day Product Recall
ROBERT SILVERMAN: Judge Rejects Bid to Use Immunity Against Suit

ST. JOE CO: 11th Circuit Affirmed Dismissal of Securities Suit
ST. JOE CO: Continues to Pursue More Oil Spill-Related Claims
STANDARD FIRE: Shook Hardy & Bacon Discusses Supreme Court Ruling
SUNPOWER CORP: To Pay $19.7MM to Settle Securities Class Suit
UNION PACIFIC: Latham Faces Conflict of Interest Allegations

UNITED BANCORP: Has Reached Deal to Settle EFTA Violation Suit
VERIZON WIRELESS: 41,000 Non-Union Retirees Can Sue as Class
VIRGIN MEDIA: Being Sold to Liberty for Too Little, Suit Claims
WHIRLPOOL CORP: Faces Class Action Over Contaminated Park

* Porter Wright Discusses How Employers Can Avert Class Actions
* Winston & Strawn Discusses Class Action Waivers in Arbitration


                        Asbestos Litigation

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Select Income Will Not Remove Fibro Assets
ASBESTOS UPDATE: General Electric Had $2.9B Reserve at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Xylem Indemnifies ITT & Exelis From Liabilities
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Forum Energy Subsidiary Had $250,000 Liability
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Badger Meter Continues to Defend PI Lawsuits

ASBESTOS UPDATE: MYR Group Continues to Defend Claims at Dec. 2012
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Quaker Chemical Subsidiary Had $3.3MM Liability
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Global Power Unit Continues to Defend Lawsuits
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Navistar Int'l. Continues to Defend Claims
ASBESTOS UPDATE: CenterPoint Energy Continues to Defend Lawsuits

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Kaiser Ventures Has 7 Active PI Suits at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS UPDATE: State Auto Had $1.4MM Reserves at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Standard Motor Had 2,140 PI Cases as of Dec. 31
ASBESTOS UPDATE: International Shipholding Had $650,000 Reserves
ASBESTOS UPDATE: EMC Insurance Had 2,235 Claims at Dec. 31

ASBESTOS UPDATE: NL Industries Continues to Defend 1,125 Cases
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Independence Realty Has Contaminated Buildings
ASBESTOS UPDATE: CenterPoint Houston Continues to Defend PI Suits
ASBESTOS UPDATE: IntriCon Corp. Continues to Defend PI Suits
ASBESTOS UPDATE: John Crane, et al. Settle Meso Case Before Trial

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Contractor Pleads Guilty to 3 Health Violations
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Euro MP's Abatement Plan Initiative Gets Support
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cwmcarn High School Leaders Hit on Expert
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Detected at The Williams County Courthouse
ASBESTOS UPDATE: BOHS/HSE Launch 2013 Series Of Fibro Roadshow

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Mishandling and Unsafe Disposal in Prisons
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Abatement of The Columbian in Lancaster Underway
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Residents Await Churchill St. Rubble Disposal
ASBESTOS UPDATE: CCTV Footage of Wattle Lane Fibro Dumping Airs
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Study Links Mineral Wool, Silica To Mesothelioma

ASBESTOS UPDATE: C$488MM Cleanup Plan for Giant Mine Proposed
ASBESTOS UPDATE: PAPHR Completes 5-Year Asbestos Survey
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Flaws in Queensland Fibro Regulations Found
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Queensland Accused of Endangering Lives
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Firms Fined for Exposure Risk at Scrap Yard

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Found at NSW Towns
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Richardson Patrick Opens New Office in Illinois
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Baron and Budd Honored at Annual ADAO Conference
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Removal at BNZ House Left to Owners
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Hazmat Found at Kennedy Dr Construction Site

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Tarantula With Fibro Found in Cardiff
ASBESTOS UPDATE: ADAO's 2013 Conference Draws to a Close
ASBESTOS UPDATE: GBP640k Spent on Cwmcarn Fibro Crisis
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Found in Warwick Home
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Canada's Federal Budget Pulls Plug on Asbestos

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Abatement Conducted USAF Antenna-Testing Facility
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Found in Willard Hall
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Chicopee City Council Sets Aside Cleanup Plan
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Redhills Offers Awareness Training Courses
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Removal Plan in Tasmania Too Costly

ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Guide to Safe Management of Fibro
ASBESTOS UPDATE: EPA Has Cleanup Plan for Corio Bay Foreshore
ASBESTOS UPDATE: 180 Health Care Sites in Canada Contain Fibro
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Test Approved at Rachel Hill School
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Employees Sue Nassau Coliseum Over Fibro Exposure

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Chiquita Brands Expects Dismissal of 30 PI Cases
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Midwest Generation Had $53M Liability at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Houston Wire Continues to Defend PI Suits
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ecology Unit Pays Construction Penalty
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Everest Had $422.849MM Reserves at Dec. 31

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Reading Int'l. Incurs $8.6MM in Site Preparation
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Steel Partners Unit Defends 1,160 Claims
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Met-Pro Corp. Had 157 Pending Cases at Jan. 31
ASBESTOS UPDATE: N.C. Ct. Denies Bid to Dismiss Ex-Worker's Suit
ASBESTOS UPDATE: N.Y. Ct. Denies Bid to Dismiss Ex-Worker's Suit

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Union Carbide's Summary Judgment Bid Denied
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Calif. App. Court Affirms Ruling for Crane
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Denial of Bid to Junk Ex-Worker's Suit Affirmed
ASBESTOS UPDATE: NY Ct. Consolidates 3 PI Suits for Joint Trial
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Inconsistency in Testimony Warrants Jury Trial

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ct. Denies Bid to Remand Ex-Navy Worker's Suit
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ill. EPA Wants Demolition of Chicago Bldg Halted
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ernie Bridge's Lawyers Call for Quick Action
ASBESTOS UPDATE: NSW Unveils Plan to Curb Fibro-Related Deaths
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Closing of Factories in Bhojpur Ruled Out

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Teachers Union in Liverpool Demand Action
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Israel's High Court Says Firm Liable on Cleanup
ASBESTOS UPDATE: ADAO Chief Comments on U.S. Fibro Importation
ASBESTOS UPDATE: April 1-7 Declared as Asbestos Awareness Week
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ohio Power Removes Suit to W.Va. Federal Court

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Removed From 3 Alabama School Bldgs
ASBESTOS UPDATE: WA Gov't Offers State Funeral for Bridge
ASBESTOS UPDATE: State Stops El Portal Hotel Cleanup
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Optima Cambridge Fined GBP80,000 Over Fibro Risk
ASBESTOS UPDATE: White Rock to Spend C$225K More on Sewer Fix

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Board OKs Fibro Removal at Connecticut School
ASBESTOS UPDATE: EMSL Analytical Offers Fibro Testing
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Keswick Hospital Undergoes GBP1.25MM Upgrade
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Extent of Contamination at Dale Farm Revealed
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Workers to Sue Nassau et al. Over Fibro Exposure

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fire in Perth Bldg Likely to Expose Fibro
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Denison County Caravan Park May Cost AU$1MM
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Drywall Worker Wins $27 Million Jury Award
ASBESTOS UPDATE: 4,500 Launceston Bldgs Hit by State Removal Plan
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Osawatomie's $3.2MM Bond Issue to Fix Schools

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Transatlantic Re Disputes AIG's Claims Coverage
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Redfield Middle School AHERA-Compliant
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Norfolk Southern Fails to Dismiss Smoker's Claim
ASBESTOS UPDATE: N.Y. Court Okays Consolidation of 8 Cases
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Baron and Budd Says US Still Importing Asbestos

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Rivendell May Borrow $495K for Abatement Project
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Roof Fix at Brisbane Home Exposed Fibro
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Exposure Killed Southampton Pensioner
ASBESTOS UPDATE: April 17 Meeting on Fate of Cwmcarn School
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Abatement at Oswego School During Spring Break

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fire at Bloxwich Furniture Factory Exposes Fibro
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Former Air Force Site Undergoes Abatement
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ex-Maryland Mayor Sues CSX Over Lung Cancer
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Motel Buildings in Alamogordo Cleaned Up
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cleanup at Former Keene Corp. Site Begins

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Expert Says Reopening of Cwmcarn School "Safe"
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Buzzards Bay to Discuss Schools Abatement Budget
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ex-British Gas Worker Calls on Others to Register
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Authorities Urged to Address Jersey Stockpile
ASBESTOS UPDATE: CSX, Honeywell, et al. Sued in Pa. State Court

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Baltimore Orioles' Team Doctor Dragged in Suit
ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Dept. to Handle Queensland Fibro Cases Urged
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ex-Preston College Handyman Expresses Concern
ASBESTOS UPDATE: UK Mom Blames Fibro for Son's Death
ASBESTOS UPDATE: PPSL & VT Flagship Fined Over Asbestos Leak

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Voting on Transparency Bill Postponed
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Nemeroff Law Firm Sponsored 9th ADAO Conference
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Special Master for Discovery Disputes Named
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Australia to Have Agency on Asbestos Issues
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Present in 65% of Sunderland Schools

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cwmcarn School Remediation to Cost GBP1.5MM


                             *********


COMCAST CORP: Weil Gotshal Discusses Supreme Court Ruling
---------------------------------------------------------
Christopher R.J. Pace, Esq. -- christopher.pace@weil.com -- at
Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP reports that class action attorneys
were anxiously awaiting the Supreme Court's opinion in Comcast
Corp. v. Behrend, which was issued March 27. Defense attorneys
were hoping the Court would hold that expert testimony offered to
support class certification is required first to pass Federal Rule
of Evidence 702/Daubert scrutiny.  They feared the Court would
decide that district courts can rely on any proof at the class
certification stage or, worse, that the Court would backtrack from
the tough standards it set for class certification two years ago
in Wal-Mart Stores v. Dukes. Conversely, plaintiffs' attorneys
feared the Court would make it more difficult to use expert
testimony to justify class certification, and hoped the Court
would retreat from or narrowly construe its Dukes decision.

In the end, neither side got what it wanted, or what it feared.
The Court's Behrend opinion breaks little new ground, and it
focuses on a particular shortcoming in the plaintiffs' case that
most litigants should be able to avoid with some extra effort and
careful attention to the expert analyses they are offering to
buttress their class certification motions.

                 The Case Before the Supreme Court

The plaintiffs are Comcast cable television subscribers who
believe that Comcast engaged in a strategy of "clustering" its
operations in certain regions (including the Philadelphia area) by
acquiring competitors' cable systems in those regions while
selling the competitors its cable systems in other regions.  As a
consequence, the plaintiffs argued, Comcast was able to stifle
competition in its operating regions through four different means,
one of which was that Comcast used its dominant market position to
deter others (called "overbuilders") from opening competing cable
networks in its regions.

At the class certification stage, the plaintiffs offered the
opinion of a damages expert who created an econometric model to
show how much lower Comcast's prices would have been if it had not
engaged in the four different types of anticompetitive conduct the
plaintiffs alleged. Critically, however, the expert didnot break
out the impact of each type of conduct on Comcast's prices.  The
district court thereafter held that it would certify a class only
to pursue the plaintiffs' overbuilder-deterrence theory of
antitrust liability.  The district court recognized that the
plaintiffs' damages expert did not assess what impact (if any)
this liability theory alone had on Comcast's prices, but
nevertheless concluded that such impact could likely be calculated
on a classwide basis.  Comcast appealed, and the Third Circuit
affirmed.

                The Supreme Court's Majority Decision

When the Supreme Court granted certiorari to review the Third
Circuit's decision, it took the unusual step of formulating the
question it wanted the parties to address: "Whether a district
court may certify a class action without resolving whether the
plaintiff class has introduced admissible evidence, including
expert testimony, to show that the case is susceptible to awarding
damages on a class-wide basis."  This led the parties in their
briefs and oral arguments to debating extensively over whether the
opinions of the plaintiffs' damages expert could pass muster under
Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals and whether the opinions
even needed to do so to justify class certification.

In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court reversed the Third Circuit,
but the majority's opinion only made passing reference, in a
footnote, to Daubert.  Instead, the majority focused on the
obvious gap between how the plaintiffs' damages expert determined
injury to Comcast subscribers (based on four different types of
anticompetitive conduct, viewed as a whole) and what the district
court certified (a class of subscribers limited to pursuing only
the plaintiffs' overbuilder-deterrence theory).  Calculations of
classwide injury "need not be exact," the majority held, but a
court at the class certification stage needed to conduct a
"rigorous analysis" to ensure that any model measuring such injury
was "consistent with [a plaintiff's] liability case" -- meaning in
the present case that the model "must measure only those damages
attributable" to Comcast's overbuilder-deterrence.  Moreover, it
was no excuse for the district court to avoid such an analysis
because it might require delving into the merits of the
plaintiffs' case; according to the majority, such "reasoning
flatly contradicts [Supreme Court] cases requiring that Rule 23
[on class certification] is satisfied, even when that requires
inquiry into the merits of the claim."

The econometric model of the plaintiffs' expert, by the expert's
own admission, did not measure antitrust injury or impact caused
solely by Comcast's alleged deterrence of overbuilder competition.
"In light of the model's inability" to do so, the majority
concluded, the district court could not certify a class pursuant
to Rule 23:

Prices whose level above what an expert deems "competitive" has
been caused by factors unrelated to an accepted theory of
antitrust harm are not "anticompetitive" in any sense relevant
here.  The first step in a damages study is the translation of the
legal theory of the harmful event into an analysis of the economic
impact of that event. The District Court and the Court of Appeals
ignored th[is] first step entirely.

                             Conclusion

While much anticipated, the Supreme Court's Behrend opinion turned
out to be fairly narrow and tied to the unique context of the
case.  Future plaintiffs will likely navigate around Behrend
either by limiting themselves to one antitrust liability theory at
the class certification stage or by having their experts parse out
the injury associated with each theory of liability.  And all
litigants will have to wait for another case to reach the Supreme
Court to get final resolution on the issue of whether evidence and
opinions can only be used to support class certification if they
are admissible under Daubert and the Federal Rules of Evidence.


COMMUNITY BANK: Unit Agrees to Settle Class Suit for $2.5-Mil.
--------------------------------------------------------------
Community Bank System, Inc., disclosed in its March 1, 2013, Form
10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for
the year ended December 31, 2012, that its subsidiary reached in
January 2013 an agreement in principle to settle a class action
lawsuit for $2.5 million.

Community Bank, N.A., was named a defendant in a class action
proceeding filed July 20, 2012, in the United States District
Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania which sought to
establish and represent a class of customers allegedly harmed by
the Bank's overdraft practices.  The complaint alleged that the
Bank failed to adequately disclose the processing order of
customer transactions from highest dollar value to lowest dollar
value which unfairly resulted in increasing the number of
overdraft charges.  The plaintiffs sought recovery of any
overdraft fees wrongfully paid by plaintiffs, damages, expenses of
litigation, attorneys' fees, and other relief deemed equitable by
the court.  This case is substantially similar to cases filed
against more than 100 other banks across the United States.  On
January 14, 2013, the Bank reached an agreement in principle to
settle this matter for $2.5 million.  This settlement is subject
to, among other things, final documentation, notice to the class,
and court approval.  This $2.5 million litigation settlement
charge was recorded in the fourth quarter of 2012

Community Bank System, Inc. -- http://www.communitybankna.com/--
was incorporated in 1983 in Delaware and its principal office is
located in DeWitt, New York.  The Company is a single bank holding
company, which wholly-owns five subsidiaries: Community Bank,
N.A., Benefit Plans Administrative Services, Inc., CFSI Closeout
Corp., First of Jermyn Realty Company, Inc. and Town & Country
Agency LLC.


DEUTSCHE BANK: Judge Allows MBS Fraud Class Action to Proceed
-------------------------------------------------------------
Jan Wolfe, writing for The Litigation Daily, reports that a fraud
class action against Deutsche Bank over mortgage-backed securities
can proceed.  Southern District Judge Katherine Forrest ruled the
shareholder-plaintiffs adequately alleged two cognizable theories
of fraud: that Deutsche Bank officials made a series of misleading
misstatements, and that the bank engaged in a systematic scheme to
defraud investors.


FIRST MIDWEST: Appeal Taken Over Dismissal of Overdraft Fees Suit
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The Plaintiffs appealed the dismissal of their class action
lawsuit against a subsidiary of First Midwest Bancorp, Inc.,
according to the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with
the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended
December 31, 2012.

In August 2011, the Company's principal subsidiary, First Midwest
Bank, was named in a purported class action lawsuit filed in the
Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, on behalf of certain of
the Bank's customers who incurred overdraft fees.  The lawsuit is
based on the Bank's practices relating to debit card transactions,
and alleges that these practices resulted in customers being
assessed excessive overdraft fees.  The plaintiffs seek an
unspecified amount of damages and other relief, including
restitution, and no class has been certified.

The Bank filed a motion to dismiss the complaint and, on
January 23, 2013, the Circuit Court granted the Bank's motion and
dismissed the complaint with prejudice.  On February 20, 2013, the
plaintiffs filed a notice of appeal with the Illinois Appellate
Court.

The Company believes that the Bank has meritorious defenses to the
claims made by the plaintiffs and, accordingly, the Bank intends
to continue to vigorously defend itself against the allegations in
the lawsuit.

First Midwest Bancorp, Inc. -- http://www.firstmidwest.com/-- is
a bank holding company headquartered in Itasca, Illinois, with
operations throughout the greater Chicago metropolitan area as
well as northwest Indiana, central and western Illinois, and
eastern Iowa.  The Company's principal subsidiary is First Midwest
Bank, which provides a broad range of commercial and retail
banking and wealth management services to consumer, corporate, and
public or governmental customers.


FORD MOTOR: Sued Over Unintended Acceleration Defects
-----------------------------------------------------
Consumers from 14 states have filed a federal class action on
March 28 against Ford Motor Co. in connection with alleged defects
in Ford's vehicles causing and failing to prevent the unintended
acceleration of those vehicles.  The suit seeks compensatory
relief on behalf of a proposed class of potentially millions of
purchasers and lessees of Ford vehicles manufactured between 2002
and 2010.

The action was filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern
District of West Virginia in Huntington by leading securities
litigation and consumer class action law firm of Grant &
Eisenhofer P.A., and other firms.

"This case is about helping Ford Motor Company fix its cars,
compensate consumers, and potentially save lives," said Adam
Levitt -- alevitt@gelaw.com -- a Grant & Eisenhofer director and
head of the firm's Consumer Practice group.  "Ford's unfortunate
history of unintended acceleration problems has been detailed at
length in the public record.  While our clients seek recovery for
the lost value of their cars, they also want Ford to fix the
problem so that no more people are injured and no more lives are
at risk because of the documented accelerator problems with Ford's
vehicles."

Plaintiffs contend that Ford vehicles equipped with an electronic
throttle control system are vulnerable to sudden unintended
acceleration events, and that Ford has admitted that some of its
vehicles are in fact prone to such acceleration.  Their complaint
alleges that the Ford vehicles share a common design defect in
lacking adequate fail-safe features, including a reliable brake-
over-accelerator system (also referred to as a "brake override
system").  Such a system is designed to allow a driver to overcome
unintended throttle opening by returning the throttle to idle when
certain conditions are met, allowing a driver to mitigate
unintended acceleration by depressing the brake.

The cars named in the complaint are:

    * Ford vehicles: 2005-2007 500; 2005-2009 Crown Victoria;
2005-2010 Econoline; 2007?2010 Edge; 2009-2010 Escape; 2005-2010
Escape HEV; 2005-2010 Expedition; 2004-2010 Explorer; 2007-2010
Explorer Sport Trac; 2004-2010 F-Series; 2009-2010 Flex; 2008-2010
Focus; 2005-2007 Freestyle; 2006-2010 Fusion; 2005-2010 Mustang;
2008-2010 Taurus; 2008-2009 Taurus X; 2002-2005 Thunderbird; and
2010 Transit Connect.

    * Lincoln vehicles: 2003-2006 LS; 2006-2008 Mark LT; 2009-2010
MKS; 2010 MKT; 2007-2010 MKX; 2006-2010 MKZ; 2005-2009 Town Car;
and 2006-2010 Zephyr.

    * Mercury vehicles: 2002-2005 Cougar (XR7); 2005-2009 Grand
Marquis; 2009-2010 Mariner; 2005-2010 Mariner HEV; 2006-2010
Milan; 2005-2007 Montego; 2004-2010 Mountaineer; and 2008-2010
Sable.

The suit contends that Ford owners have experienced unacceptable
rates of sudden unintended acceleration, citing a report issued in
October 2011 by the U.S. Department of Transportation Inspector
General.  Plaintiffs allege that Ford should have prevented the
SUA incidents by including the brake-over-accelerator system or
other fail-safe systems in its vehicles.  They maintain that,
while Ford began installing a BOA system on some of its North
American cars beginning in 2010, the company has failed to remedy,
or even warn drivers about the lack of a brake-over-accelerator
system on its earlier vehicles.

Plaintiffs, individually and on behalf of all other class members,
seek compensatory damages for the lost value of their cars -- the
difference between what they originally paid for their cars versus
the actual value of their defective vehicles.  Plaintiffs also
seek injunctive relief, requesting that Ford fix the problem.

Mr. Levitt stated: "The electronic throttle system takes control
of the accelerator from the driver, and when problems occur, the
results can be deadly.  Other automakers have long recognized the
risks associated with electronic throttles, and have implemented
safety features when the driver hits the brakes.  Ford was aware
that technology is available that could fix the problem and save
lives, but chose not to do anything about it until only three
years ago.  Our objective is to see that consumers are properly
compensated, and to see that the defects are addressed in all Ford
vehicles manufactured between 2002 and 2010."

Grant & Eisenhofer has led some of the largest investor recoveries
on record in securities class actions, including serving as co-
lead counsel to investors in a class action against Tyco
International.  Mr. Levitt, who launched the opening of the firm's
Chicago office in January, has served as co-lead counsel in some
of the largest class actions in recent years, including securing
more than $1 billion in damages for plaintiffs in two of the
largest agri/biotech cases in U.S. history.  He currently
represents car buyers in a product liability class action against
Porsche involving claims arising from defective parts in the
automaker's Cayenne model (In re Porsche Cars North America, Inc.,
Plastic Coolant Tubes Products Liability Litigation), as well as
other pending automotive cases against Ford and BMW.

Those seeking additional details or desiring a copy of the new
complaint may call the toll-free number: 866-365-8533, or visit
http://www.gelaw.com/ford/

The case is styled as: Belville, et al. v. Ford Motor Company,
Case No. 2:13-cv-11111 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of
West Virginia, Huntington).  Co-counsel to plaintiffs are the law
firms of: Spilman, Thomas & Battle, PLLC; The Dicello Law Firm;
Bucci Bailey & Javins L.C.; Bartimus, Frickleton, Robertson &
Gorny, P.C.; Murray and Murray Co., L.P.A.; Searcy, Denney,
Scarola, Barnhart & Shipley PA; Siprut P.C.; Bremer, Whyte, Brown
& O'Meara LLP; The Miller Law Firm, P.C.; and Davis, Bethune &
Jones, LLC.

Grant & Eisenhofer P.A. -- http://www.gelaw.com-- represents
institutional investors and shareholders internationally in
securities class actions, corporate governance actions and
derivative litigation.


GIFT SHOP: Recalls Food Products Due to Undeclared Allergens
------------------------------------------------------------
The Gift Shop at Buffalo Trace Distillery voluntarily recalled all
non-expired products listed below due to mislabeling and
undeclared allergens.  People who have an allergy or severe
sensitivity to wheat, soy, anchovy, and/or milk, run the risk of
serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume
these products.

All labels on future products will be corrected to list all
allergens.  The mislabeled products, all sold under the Buffalo
Trace Distillery brand name, can be identified with the following
names and are missing these allergens in the ingredients:

                                                    BEST BY
   PRODUCT              ALLERGEN       PACKAGE       DATES
   -------              --------       -------      -------
   Bourbon Flavored     Milk and Soy   8 oz. jar    02/16/14
   Caramel Sauce

   UPC: 795436001058

   Bourbon Flavored     Milk and Soy   8 oz. jar    01/30/14
   Fudge Sauce

   UPC: 795436001034

   Marinade for Meat    Wheat, Soy &   12 fl. oz.   10/30/14
                        Anchovy        bottle
   UPC: 795436001072

   Barbeque Sauce       Soy and        16 fl. oz.   01/19/15
                        Anchovy        jar
   UPC: 795436001065

   Hot Barbeque Sauce   Soy and        16 fl. oz.   11/07/14
                        Anchovy        jar
   UPC: 795436000174

Pictures of the recalled products are available at:

         http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm345603.htm

The recalled units were distributed to retail grocery stores,
specialty stores, liquor stores, and online in the following
states: AL, AZ, CA, CO, GA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MD, MI, MO, NC,
NE, NJ, NV, NY, OK, PA, SD, TN, TX, VA, WA, WI, WV, and also Wasa,
British Columbia, Canada and West Midlands, UK between January
2012 to January 2013.  No other products are involved.  No adverse
reactions or illnesses have been reported to date from these
products.

The Gift Shop at Buffalo Trace Distillery was notified by the
manufacturer, after an inspection by the Kentucky Department of
Public Health, that these products were distributed in packaging
that did not reveal the presence of the allergens in the
ingredient lists on the labels.

The Company has received no reports to date of adverse reactions
or illnesses due to the consumption of these products.

The Food and Drug Administration has been notified of this
voluntary recall and the Gift Shop at Buffalo Trace Distillery has
been working with them on this issue.

The Company says it is committed to producing safe, quality food
products that customers can enjoy at home every day.  Customers
may return affected product to the retailer where it was purchased
for full refund or call the Buffalo Trace Gift Shop at 800-654-
8471, from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday to Friday or 10:00 a.m. -
4:00 p.m. Saturdays.  All times are Eastern Daylight Time.


GREAT LAKES: Glancy Binkow & Goldberg Files Class Action
--------------------------------------------------------
Glancy Binkow & Goldberg LLP, representing investors of Great
Lakes Dredge & Dock Corporation, has filed a class action lawsuit
in the United States District Court for the Northern District of
Illinois on behalf of a class comprising all purchasers of Great
Lakes securities between August 7, 2012 and March 14, 2013,
inclusive.  The Complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period
the Company and certain of its executive officers issued false
and/or misleading statements or failed to disclose material
adverse facts concerning the Company's business, operations and
financial prospects.

A copy of the Complaint is available from the court or from Glancy
Binkow & Goldberg LLP.  Please contact us by phone to discuss this
action or to obtain a copy of the Complaint at (310) 201-9150,
Toll-Free at (888) 773-9224, or by e-mail at
shareholders@glancylaw.com

Great Lakes engages in marine construction, primarily dredging,
and commercial and industrial demolition primarily in the east,
west and Gulf Coasts of the United States.  The Complaint alleges
that throughout the Class Period defendants misrepresented and/or
failed to disclose: (1) that the Company was accounting pending
change orders as revenue where client acceptance had yet to be
finalized; (2) that, as such, the Company was improperly
recognizing revenue for its demolition segment; (3) that the
Company's revenue was overstated; (4) that, as such, the Company's
financial results were not prepared in accordance with Generally
Accepted Accounting Principles; (5) that the Company lacked
adequate internal and financial controls; and (6) that, as a
result of the foregoing, the Company's financial statements were
materially false and misleading at all relevant times.

On March 14, 2013, after the close of trading, the Company
disclosed that it would restate its financial results for the
Company's 2012 fiscal second and third quarters.  According to the
Company, Great Lakes had been improperly recording revenue
recognition by accounting pending change orders as revenue where
client acceptance had yet to be finalized.  As a result of the
announced restatement, the Company's second quarter 2012 revenues
were reduced by $3.9 million and the third quarter 2012 revenues
were reduced by $4.3 million.  The Company also announced that the
restatement would delay the filing of its 2012 Annual Report.

As a result of this news, shares of the Company declined $1.615
per share, or 8%, to close on March 15, 2013 at $7.355 per share
on unusually heavy trading volume.

Plaintiff seeks to recover damages on behalf of Class members and
is represented by Glancy Binkow & Goldberg LLP, a law firm with
significant experience in prosecuting class actions and
substantial expertise in actions involving corporate fraud.

No class has yet been certified in this action. To be a member of
the Class you need not take any action at this time, or you may
retain counsel of your choice.  If you purchased Great Lakes
securities during the Class Period you have certain rights, and
have until May 20, 2013 to move for lead plaintiff status.  If you
wish to learn more about this action, or have any questions
concerning your rights or interests with respect to these matters,
please contact Michael Goldberg, Esq., of Glancy Binkow & Goldberg
LLP, 1925 Century Park East, Suite 2100, Los Angeles, California
90067, by telephone at (310) 201-9150, Toll Free at (888) 773-
9224, by e-mail to shareholders@glancylaw.com or visit our Web
site at http://www.glancylaw.com


HEALTHCARE REVENUE: TCPA Suit Obtains Class Certification
---------------------------------------------------------
Patrick Lunsford, writing for insideARM.com, reports a federal
judge in Florida on March 26 granted class certification to a case
brought by a consumer against a medical debt collection agency
over a message left in the plaintiff's voicemail.  The consumer is
seeking damages under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
(FDCPA) and the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).  The
case also names the original creditor, a hospital, citing
vicarious liability under the TCPA.

Stephen Manno, the proposed class representative, received medical
treatment in the emergency room at Memorial Hospital Pembroke.
While at Memorial, Mr. Manno was treated by the hospital's agent,
an attending physician of Inphynet, the hospital's operator.
During the admissions process, Mr. Manno filled out paperwork and
provided a cellular telephone number to the hospital.  Mr. Manno
claims that he did not expressly consent to use of the telephone
number for debt collection purposes.

Medical services obtained from Inphynet are billed through a
billing company, Health Care Financial Services (HCFS) and are
referred to Healthcare Revenue Recovery Group (HRRG) for
collection if the bill is not paid. All of the debts that HRRG
collects for Inphynet are medical debts.

Mr. Manno did not pay for the services he received at Memorial,
the debt went into default, and was referred to HRRG for
collection.  HRRG, in an effort to collect the hospital debt owed
to Inphynet, called Mr. Manno using the telephone number he
provided during the emergency room admissions process.  The
telephone number was in the name of his girlfriend, now wife,
Shantal Surprenant.

On June 17, 2010, HRRG, on behalf of Inphynet, allegedly left the
following prerecorded voicemail message for Mr. Manno in which it
failed to identify itself as a debt collector:

"This is HRRG calling.  We look forward to helping you.  Please
return our call at 1-800-984-9115.  Thank you."

This was allegedly the standard message HRRG was using in June of
2010 to contact consumers.  So Mr. Manno sued HRRG and Inphynet on
June 15, 2011.  He sought class action certification for the suit
claiming that the conditions were right for such a ruling.

U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola Jr. agreed with Mr. Manno on
March 26, ruling that the class met the prerequisites for
certification.  The class includes all Florida residents for whom
HRRG left a telephone message in an attempt to collect a debt, but
failed to disclose that it was a message from a debt collector.
Excluded from the class are people who gave their express prior
consent to call their cell phones prior to the placement of the
calls.

The case is Stephen M. Manno, et al. v. Healthcare Revenue
Recovery Group LLC, et al. in the U.S. District Court for the
Southern District of Florida.


HEARTLAND GOURMET: Recalls Gluten Free Chip & Pizza Crust Mixes
---------------------------------------------------------------
Heartland Gourmet, LLC of Lincoln, Nebraska, is voluntarily
recalling the following items because they may contain undeclared
Milk.  People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to Milk
run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if
they consume these products.

   * Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix: Item # 2017 UPC Code
     7376967020171 16 oz. Lot #0023065, best buy date of 12/2014
     and distributed in March of 2013, and Lot # 0023007, best
     buy date of 10/2014 and distributed in February 2013.

   * Gluten Free Double Chocolate Cookie Mix: Item # 1530 -- UPC
     Code 737697015306 16 oz. Lot #0012289 -- Best buy Date of
     10/2014 and distributed in October of 2012; Lot #0022317
     with a best buy date of 10/2014 and distributed in November
     of 2012; and Lot #0012341 with a best buy date of 01/2014
     and distributed in December of 2012.

   * Gluten Free Pizza Crust Mix: Item # 2024 UPC Code
     737697020249 15.4 oz. Lot #0073007.  Best buy date of
     09/2014 and distributed in January of 2013.

Pictures of the recalled products' labels are available at:

         http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm345787.htm

The Gluten Free Mixes were distributed in Minnesota, Texas,
Indiana, Connecticut, North Carolina, California and Colorado
through retail and fundraising.  No illnesses have been reported
to date.

The recall was initiated after routine sample testing conducted by
Canada showed products with "Dairy Free" labels tested positive
for milk.  Follow up testing conducted by the firm confirmed these
products tested positive for milk.  Subsequent investigation
indicates the problem was caused by a temporary breakdown in the
Company's production and packaging processes.

Consumers who have purchased these Gluten Free items are urged to
return it to the place of purchase for a full refund.  Consumers
with questions may contact the company at 1-800-735-6828 between
9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday - Friday.


LI-ION BATTERY MAKERS: Hagens Berman Seeks Class Counsel Status
---------------------------------------------------------------
Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP on March 29 filed papers with the
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
petitioning for appointment of the firm as interim class counsel
for indirect purchasers in a class-action lawsuit alleging that
several of the largest producers of lithium-ion batteries,
including LG, Panasonic, Sanyo, Sony, Samsung, and Hitachi,
participated in a scheme to fix battery prices.

The lawsuit alleges that the defendants used their collective
power to fix and artificially increase the prices of lithium-ion
batteries, which are commonly used in many consumer electronic
products.  The complaint says that, as a result of this activity,
consumers overpaid for devices such as cell phones, digital
cameras and notebook computers.

Consumers who have purchased a device containing a lithium-ion
battery are encouraged to contact Hagens Berman by calling (206)
623-7292 or by e-mailing batteries@hbsslaw.com

Hagens Berman managing partner Steve Berman noted the importance
of the case for consumers.

"Over the last several years, lithium-ion batteries have
revolutionized a number of portable computing devices such as
Apple's iPad," he said.  "We believe that the major players in the
lithium-ion battery industry fixed prices, and device
manufacturers like Apple passed that cost along to consumers
resulting in a direct increase in prices for a number of portable
computing devices."

Hagens Berman on March 29 filed an application with the court to
represent a possible class of consumers who purchased devices
containing lithium-ion batteries.  The firm has led a number of
similar price-fixing cases in the past, including litigation
against optical disc drive (ODD) makers and LCD screens, also
components in many of the same portable computing devices that
contain the batteries.

More information about this case is available at
http://www.hbsslaw.com/cases-and-investigations/cases/batteries

                        About Hagens Berman

Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro, LLP -- http://www.hbsslaw.com-- is a
national law firm with offices in 10 cities.  The firm represents
consumers, investors, whistleblowers, workers and others in
complex litigation.  Hagens Berman has been named to the National
Law Journal's Plaintiffs' Hot List six times.


LIFESTYLE EVOLUTION: Recalls NuGO FREE, Dark and Slim Bars
----------------------------------------------------------
Lifestyle Evolution Inc. announces the voluntary recall of NuGO
FREE, NuGO Dark and NuGO Slim Non Dairy bars Made BEFORE October
2012 because of the potential for undeclared milk.  Individuals
with allergies to dairy run the risk of serious or life-
threatening allergic reaction if they consume products containing
milk protein.  Lactose intolerance is not a milk allergy and
should not be confused with a milk protein allergy.  Lifestyle
Evolution's voluntary recall is being conducted in consultation
with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The products were distributed nationwide.

ONLY PRODUCT WITH BEST BY DATE OF 2013 IS SUBJECT TO RECALL (i.e.
25 Dec 13).

PRODUCTS WITH 2014 BEST BY DATES ARE NOT SUBJECT TO RECALL (i.e.
23 Feb 14).

Recalled products have BEST BY DATE of 2013

   Product Name            UPC (box of 12)    UPC (indiv Bar)
   ------------            --------------     --------------
   NuGO FREE Dark           691535 45302       691535 45301
   Chocolate Trail Mix

   NuGO FREE Dark           691535 45102       691535 45101
   Chocolate Crunch

   NuGO FREE Carrot Cake    691535 45502       691535 45501

   NuGO Dark Chocolate      691535 52102       691535 52101
   Chocolate Chip

   NuGO Dark Mocha          691535 52302       691535 52301

   NuGO Dark Mint           691535 52502       691535 52501
   Chocolate Chip

   NuGO Dark Peanut         691535 52702       691535 52701
   Butter Cup

   NuGO Dark Pretzel        691535 52902       691535 50901

   NuGO Slim Crunchy        691535 20702       691535 20701
   Peanut butter

   NuGO Slim Espresso       691535 20902       691535 20901

The recall was initiated out of an abundance of caution after
testing revealed the possible presence of trace levels of milk
protein in products that did not declare milk on the label.
Corrective actions have been taken to address the problem.

There has been one report of an allergic reaction.  Distributors
and customers that have purchased these products directly will be
notified by Lifestyle Evolution, Inc. regarding product return
procedures.  Consumers with questions should contact customer
service 1-866-266-7623 between 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Eastern
Standard Time Monday thru Friday.

The Company says it is dedicated to the health and safety of its
consumers.  Therefore, the Company initiated this voluntary
recall.  The Company apologizes to its distributors and its
customers and sincerely regrets any inconvenience caused by this
event.


LISY CORP: Recalls Five Seasoning Blends on Undeclared Soy
----------------------------------------------------------
Lisy Corporation of Miami, Florida, is voluntarily recalling
select seasoning blends because they contain the ingredient soy
that is not declared on the label.  People who have an allergy or
severe sensitivity to soy run the risk of serious or life-
threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.

No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this
recall.

   * Lisy Sazon Perfecta -- Perfect Seasoning -- 4 oz. bottle,
     UPC Code 096786600459, 12 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786500063
     and 24 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786300144 with distribution
     dates starting on 3/21/2011.

   * Lisy Adobo All Purpose Seasoning with Pepper -- Adobo Con
     Pimienta -- 5 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786600466, 14 oz.
     bottle, UPC Code 096786500254 and 32 oz. bottle, UPC Code
     096786300106 with distribution dates starting on 3/9/2011.

   * Lisy Adobo All Purpose Seasoning without Pepper -- Adobo Sin
     Pimienta -- 5 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786600473, 14 oz.
     bottle, UPC Code 096786500261 and 32 oz. bottle, UPC Code
     096786300113 with distribution dates starting on 9/5/2011.

   * Lisy Seasoned Meat Tenderizer -- Sazonador De Carnes --
     5 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786600503, 14 oz. bottle, UPC Code
     096786500315 and 28 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786300076 with
     distribution dates starting on 3/7/2011.

   * Lisy Fajita Seasoning -- Sazon Fajita -- 5 oz. bottle, UPC
     Code 096786600541, 14 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786500056 and
     28 oz. bottle, UPC Code 096786300700 with distribution dates
     starting 3/25/2011.

Pictures of the recalled products are available at:

         http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm345858.htm

The products were distributed nationwide in retail stores.  There
were no lot numbers identifying the bottles.  Any products
purchased from March 1, 2011, to March 27, 2013, should be
returned to the place of purchase for replacement or a refund may
be attained by calling 305-836-6001 ext. 233.

The recall was initiated after it was discovered during a routine
inspection that the products containing soy, inadvertently omitted
the listing of soy on the ingredient listing.

Consumers with questions may contact Henry Rosen at 305-836-6001
ext. 233 from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday
through Friday.


MAXWELL TECHNOLOGIES: Glancy Binkow & Goldberg Files Class Action
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Glancy Binkow & Goldberg LLP, representing investors of Maxwell
Technologies, Inc., has filed a class action lawsuit in the United
States District Court for the Southern District of California on
behalf of a class comprising all purchasers of Maxwell common
stock between April 28, 2011 and March 7, 2013, inclusive.  The
Complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period the Company and
certain of its executive officers issued false and/or misleading
statements or failed to disclose material adverse facts concerning
the Company's business, operations and prospects.

A copy of the Complaint is available from the court or from Glancy
Binkow & Goldberg LLP.  Please contact us by phone to discuss this
action or to obtain a copy of the Complaint at (310) 201-9150,
Toll-Free at (888) 773-9224, or by e-mail at
shareholders@glancylaw.com

Maxwell develops, manufactures, and markets energy storage and
power delivery products, and microelectronic products worldwide.
Specifically, the Complaint alleges that defendants made false
and/or misleading statements and/or failed to disclose: (1) that
employees of the Company were making certain arrangements with
certain distributors regarding the payment terms for sales to such
distributors with respect to certain transactions; (2) that these
arrangements had not been communicated to Maxwell's finance and
accounting department; (3) that, as a result, these arrangements
had not been considered when recording revenue on shipments to
these distributors; (4) that a fixed or determinable sales price
did not exist at the time of shipment to these distributors; (5)
that collection was not reasonably assured at the time revenue had
been recognized for certain transactions; (6) that, as a result,
the Company was improperly recognizing revenue related to sales
transactions to distributors; (7) that, as such, the Company's
financial results were not prepared in accordance with Generally
Accepted Accounting Principles ("GAAP"); (8) that the Company
lacked adequate internal and financial controls; and (9) that, as
a result of the foregoing, the Company's statements were
materially false and misleading at all relevant times.

On March 7, 2013, the Company announced that its previously issued
financial statements contained in its annual report on Form 10-K
for the year ended December 31, 2011, and all unaudited quarterly
reports on Form 10-Q in 2011 and 2012, should no longer be relied
upon because of errors in those financial statements.  According
to the Company, the errors relate to the timing of recognition of
revenue from sales to certain distributors.  The Company further
disclosed that "as a result of our investigation, certain
employees were terminated and our Sr. Vice President of Sales and
Marketing resigned. . . ."

On this news, the Company's shares declined $1.01 per share on
March 8, 2013, to close at $8.10 per share -- a one-day decline of
11% on unusually heavy trading volume.

No class has yet been certified in this action. To be a member of
the Class you need not take any action at this time, or you may
retain counsel of your choice.  If you purchased Maxwell common
stock during the Class Period you have certain rights, and have
until May 13, 2013 to move for lead plaintiff status.  If you wish
to learn more about this action, or have any questions concerning
your rights or interests with respect to these matters, please
contact Michael Goldberg, Esquire, of Glancy Binkow & Goldberg
LLP, 1925 Century Park East, Suite 2100, Los Angeles, California
90067, by telephone at (310) 201-9150, Toll Free at (888) 773-
9224, by e-mail to shareholders@glancylaw.com or visit our website
at http://www.glancylaw.com


MERRILL LYNCH: Appeals From Dismissal of Antitrust Suits Pending
----------------------------------------------------------------
Appeals from the dismissal of two antitrust class action lawsuits
against Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., remain pending, according to
the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended
December 31, 2012.

On September 4, 2008, two putative antitrust class actions were
filed against ML & Co., Bank of America and other financial
institutions in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District
of New York.  The Plaintiffs in both actions assert federal
antitrust claims under Section 1 of the Sherman Act based on
allegations that defendants conspired to restrain trade in auction
rate securities ("ARS") by placing support bids in ARS auctions,
only to collectively withdraw those bids in February 2008, which
allegedly caused ARS auctions to fail.  In the first action, Mayor
and City Council of Baltimore, Maryland v. Citigroup, Inc., et
al., plaintiff seeks to represent a class of issuers of ARS that
defendants underwrote between May 12, 2003, and February 13, 2008.
This issuer action seeks to recover, among other relief, the
alleged above-market interest payments that ARS issuers allegedly
have had to make after defendants allegedly stopped placing
"support bids" in ARS auctions.  In the second action, Mayfield,
et al. v. Citigroup, Inc., et al., plaintiff seeks to represent a
class of investors that purchased ARS from defendants and held
those securities when ARS auctions failed on February 13, 2008.
The Plaintiff seeks to recover, among other relief, unspecified
damages for losses in the ARS' market value, and rescission of the
investors' ARS purchases.  Both actions also seek treble damages
and attorneys' fees under the Sherman Act's private civil remedy.
On January 25, 2010, the court dismissed both actions with
prejudice and plaintiffs' respective appeals are currently pending
in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. is a holding company that, through its
subsidiaries, is one of the world's leading capital markets,
advisory and wealth management companies.  Merrill Lynch is a
Delaware corporation headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina,
and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation.


MERRILL LYNCH: Awaits Final Okay of "Chambers" Suit Settlement
--------------------------------------------------------------
Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. is awaiting final approval of its
settlement of the class action lawsuit brought by Chambers, et
al., according to the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing
with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the year
ended December 31, 2012.

Since 2009, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated
("MLPF&S") and certain affiliates have been named as defendants in
lawsuits and arbitrations brought by former Merrill Lynch
employees, primarily financial advisors, who participated in
certain Merrill Lynch equity and contingent long term incentive
compensation plans (the "Plans").  These actions generally allege
that the former employees had "good reason" to resign as that term
is defined under the change in control provisions of the
applicable Plans and, as such, are entitled to immediate vesting
and payment of forfeited awards and/or monetary sums under those
Plans.  In addition to litigation and arbitration, additional
employees or their representatives have sent letters seeking
payment directly from Merrill Lynch.

In addition, a putative class action was filed in October 2009,
entitled Chambers, et al. v. Merrill Lynch & Co., et al., in the
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, seeking
certification of a putative class of financial advisors and
seeking damages and other payments under the good reason
provisions of certain contingent incentive compensation plans.  On
November 26, 2012, the parties entered into an agreement to settle
Chambers.  The settlement amount has been fully accrued.  On
December 13, 2012, the court issued an order granting preliminary
approval to the settlement and providing for notice to potential
class members.  The agreement is subject to the court's final
approval.  Other actions asserting good reason claims remain
pending.

Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. is a holding company that, through its
subsidiaries, is one of the world's leading capital markets,
advisory and wealth management companies.  Merrill Lynch is a
Delaware corporation headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina,
and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation.


MERRILL LYNCH: Final Hearing on Securities Suit Deal on April 5
---------------------------------------------------------------
A final hearing on Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.'s settlement of a
consolidated securities lawsuit will be held on April 5, 2013,
according to the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with
the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended
December 31, 2012.

Beginning in January 2009, Bank of America, ML & Co. and/or
certain of their current and former officers and directors, among
others, were named as defendants in a variety of securities
actions filed in federal courts in connection with securities
filings by Bank of America and Merrill Lynch.  The securities
filings contained information with respect to events that took
place from September 2008 through January 2009 contemporaneous
with Bank of America's acquisition of Merrill Lynch (the
"Acquisition").  Certain federal court actions were consolidated
and/or coordinated in the U.S. District Court for the Southern
District of New York under the caption In re Bank of America
Securities, Derivative and Employee Retirement Income Security Act
(ERISA) Litigation (the "Consolidated Action").

The claims in these actions generally concern alleged material
misrepresentations and/or omissions with respect to: (i) the
Acquisition; (ii) the financial condition of and 2008 fourth-
quarter losses experienced by Bank of America and Merrill Lynch;
(iii) due diligence conducted in connection with the Acquisition;
(iv) the terms of the Acquisition agreements regarding Merrill
Lynch's ability to pay bonuses to Merrill Lynch employees of up to
$5.8 billion for the year 2008; (v) Bank of America's discussions
with government officials in December 2008, regarding Bank of
America's consideration of invoking the material adverse change
clause in the Acquisition agreement; (vi) Bank of America's
discussions with government officials in December 2008 regarding
the possibility of obtaining government assistance in completing
the Acquisition; and/or (vii) the proxy statement and related
materials for the Acquisition.

The Plaintiffs ("Securities Plaintiffs") in the securities class
action in the Consolidated Action (the "Consolidated Securities
Class Action"), a consolidated class action pending in the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of New York, asserted
claims under Sections 14(a), 10(b), and 20(a) of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934 (the "Exchange Act"), and Sections 11,
12(a)(2) and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933 (the "Securities
Act") and asserted damages based on the drop in the stock price
upon subsequent disclosures.  In February 2012, the court granted
a motion for class certification.  On November 30, 2012, the
parties entered into a settlement agreement.  The agreement, which
is subject to court approval, provides for a payment by Bank of
America of $2.425 billion, and the institution and/or continuation
of certain Bank of America corporate governance enhancements until
the later of January 1, 2015, or eighteen months following the
court's final approval of the settlement.  In exchange, Securities
Plaintiffs released their claims against all defendants and
certain other persons or entities affiliated with defendants.  On
December 4, 2012, the court issued an order granting preliminary
approval of the settlement and scheduling a final hearing for
April 5, 2013.

Certain shareholders have opted to pursue Acquisition-related
claims under the Exchange Act and/or Securities Act apart from the
consolidated class action, and these individual actions have been
coordinated for pre-trial purposes in the Consolidated Securities
Class Action.  These individual plaintiffs assert substantially
the same facts and claims as the class action plaintiffs.

Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. is a holding company that, through its
subsidiaries, is one of the world's leading capital markets,
advisory and wealth management companies.  Merrill Lynch is a
Delaware corporation headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina,
and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation.


MGM RESORTS: Bid to Dismiss Securities Suit Remains Pending
-----------------------------------------------------------
MGM Resorts International and other defendants' motion to dismiss
a consolidated securities litigation remains pending, according to
the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended
December 31, 2012.

In 2009, various shareholders filed six lawsuits, including one
class action lawsuit, in Nevada federal and state court against
the Company and various of its former and current directors and
officers alleging federal securities laws violations and/or
related breaches of fiduciary duties in connection with statements
allegedly made by the defendants during the period August 2007
through the date of such lawsuit filings in 2009 (the "class
period").  In general, the lawsuits assert the same or similar
allegations, including that during the relevant period defendants
artificially inflated the Company's common stock price by
knowingly making materially false and misleading statements and
omissions to the investing public about the Company's financial
statements and condition, operations, CityCenter joint venture
(the Company's most significant unconsolidated affiliate) and the
intrinsic value of the Company's common stock; that these alleged
misstatements and omissions thereby enabled certain Company
insiders to derive personal profit from the sale of Company common
stock to the public; that defendants caused plaintiffs and other
shareholders to purchase Company common stock at artificially
inflated prices; and that defendants imprudently implemented a
share repurchase program to the detriment of the Company.  The
lawsuits seek unspecified compensatory damages, restitution and
disgorgement of alleged profits and/or attorneys' fees and costs
in amounts to be proven at trial, as well as injunctive relief
related to corporate governance.

The consolidated class action lawsuit is captioned In re MGM
MIRAGE Securities Litigation, Case No. 2:09-cv-01558-GMN-LRL.

In November 2009, the U.S. District Court for Nevada consolidated
the Robert Lowinger v. MGM MIRAGE, et al. (Case No. 2:09-cv-01558-
RCL-LRL, filed August 19, 2009) and Khachatur Hovhannisyan v. MGM
MIRAGE, et al. (Case No. 2:09-cv-02011-LRH-RJJ, filed October 19,
2009) putative class actions under the caption "In re MGM MIRAGE
Securities Litigation."  The cases name the Company and certain
former and current directors and officers as defendants and allege
violations of Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange
Act of 1934, as amended (the "Exchange Act") and Rule 10b-5
promulgated thereunder.  These cases were transferred in July 2010
to the Honorable Gloria M. Navarro.  In October 2010 the court
appointed several employee retirement benefits funds as co-lead
plaintiffs and their counsel as co-lead and co-liaison counsel.

In January 2011, lead plaintiffs filed a consolidated amended
complaint, alleging that between August 2, 2007, and March 5,
2009, the Company, its directors and certain of its officers
artificially inflated the market price of the Company's securities
by knowingly making materially false and misleading public
statements and omissions concerning the Company's financial
condition, its liquidity, its access to credit, and the costs and
progress of construction of the CityCenter development.  The
consolidated amended complaint asserts violations of Sections
10(b) and 20(a) of the Exchange Act and Rule 10b-5 thereunder.

On March 15, 2011, all defendants moved to dismiss the
consolidated amended complaint on the grounds that it fails to
allege facts upon which relief could be granted under the federal
securities laws, and on the further ground that the complaint
fails to satisfy the heightened pleading standards mandated by the
Private Securities Litigation Reform Act ("PSLRA").  The motions
to dismiss emphasized three primary arguments: 1) the complaint
fails to allege that the defendants made false or misleading
statements of fact, as opposed to statements concerning plans and
expectations that did not anticipate the severity of the financial
crisis of 2008-2009 and the challenges presented by constructing
CityCenter; 2) the complaint fails to allege facts supporting a
"strong inference" of wrongful intent, as the PSLRA requires; and
3) the complaint fails to plead adequately that the alleged
wrongdoing was the cause of the decline in the price of the
Company's publicly traded securities.  The parties completed the
briefing in support of, and in opposition to, the motions to
dismiss, and requested oral argument on the motions.

On March 27, 2012, the court issued an order which granted the
defendant's motion to dismiss plaintiffs' consolidated complaint
without prejudice, and allowed plaintiffs an opportunity to file
an amended complaint.  On April 17, 2012, plaintiffs filed an
amended complaint which substantially repeats but reorganizes
their substantive allegations and asserts the same claims as
raised in the original complaint.  On May 30, 2012, the defendants
filed a joint motion to dismiss plaintiffs' amended complaint.
The motion is pending.

Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts International --
http://www.mgmresorts.com/-- has significant holdings in gaming,
hospitality and entertainment, owns and operates 15 properties
located in Nevada, Mississippi and Michigan, and has 50%
investments in four other properties in Nevada, Illinois and
Macau.


NATURA PET: Recalls Dry Pet Foods Due to Possible Health Risk
-------------------------------------------------------------
Natura Pet Products is voluntarily expanding its recall of dry pet
food because it has the potential to be contaminated with
Salmonella.  No Salmonella-related illnesses have been confirmed
to date.

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is
risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially
if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having
contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these
products.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves
for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting,
diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever.
Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including
arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye
irritation, and urinary tract symptoms.  Consumers exhibiting
these signs after having contact with this product should contact
their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea
or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting.  Some pets will have only
decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain.  Infected but
otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or
humans.  If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has
these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

Sampling conducted by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and
the Georgia Department of Agriculture confirmed the presence of
Salmonella in additional dry cat food and a cat pet treat.  In an
abundance of caution, Natura is also recalling product made in the
surrounding timeframe.  This affects dry foods only; no canned wet
food is affected by this announcement.

The affected products are sold through veterinary clinics and
select pet specialty retailers nationwide and in Canada, Hong
Kong, Korea, Japan, Malaysia and Costa Rica, as well as online.
The dry cat food expiration dates for this expanded recall range
from 1/1/2014 to 3/24/2014.  The dry cat treats have expiration
dates from 7/1/13 to 9/27/13.

Consumers who have purchased these pet foods should discard them.
For additional information, consumers may visit
http://www.naturapet.com/. For further information or a product
replacement or refund call Natura toll-free at 800-224-6123
(Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Central Standard Time).

The included lot codes are: Expiration Date: 12/14/13 thru 3/24/14

                    Brand: California Natural
  -----------------------------------------------------------
  Size     Description          UPC Code          Lot Code(s)
  ----     -----------          --------          -----------
  30LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39704 7   3050A70001
           DOG HERRING & SWEET
           POTATO FORMULA

  30LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39940 9   2362A70001,
           DOG KANGAROO & RED                     3059A70001,
           LENTILS FORMULA                        3044A70001,
           GRAIN FREE                             3079A70001

  30LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 12564 0   3015A70001
           DOG KANGAROO
           GRAIN FREE BLNGL

  30LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39354 4   3022A70001
           DOG RICE AND LAMB
           MEAL LOW FAT FORMULA

  30LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39378 0   3015A70001,
           DOG SALMON MEAL &                      3031A70001,
           PEAS FORMULA                           3030A70001,
           GRAIN FREE                             3017A70001,
                                                  3016A70001

  30LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82352 2   3057A70001
           PUPPY CHICKEN MEAL
           & RICE FORMULA

  30LB     CALIFORNIA NATURALS  7 51485 12565 7   3015A70001,
           DOG FOOD GRAIN FREE                    3017A70001
           SALMON LARGE BAG ADULT

  15LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82356 0   3073A70002,
           CAT AND KITTEN                         3072A70002
           CHICKEN AND BROWN
           RICE FORMULA

  15LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39941 6   2362A70002,
           DOG KANGAROO & RED                     3059A70002,
           LENTILS FORMULA                        3044A70002,
           GRAIN FREE                             3045A70002

  15LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39355 1   3022A70002
           DOG RICE AND LAMB
           MEAL LOW FAT FORMULA

  15LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39379 7   3030A70002,
           DOG SALMON MEAL &                      3014A70002
           PEAS FORMULA GRAIN FREE

  15LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82353 9   3056A70002
           PUPPY CHICKEN MEAL
           & RICE FORMULA

  15LB     CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82357 7   3044A70002,
           CAT HERRING AND                        3043A70002
           SWEET POTATO FORMULA

  5LB      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82387 4   3072A70003
           CAT AND KITTEN
           CHICKEN AND BROWN
           RICE FORMULA

  5LB      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82377 5   3042A70003
           DOG CHICKEN MEAL
           AND RICE FORMULA

  5LB      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39942 3   2362A70003,
           DOG KANGAROO & RED                     3059A70003,
           LENTILS FORMULA                        3044A70003
           GRAIN FREE

  5LB      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39335 3   3022A70003
           DOG RICE AND LAMB
           MEAL LOW FAT FORMULA

  5LB      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 39380 3   3030A70003,
           DOG SALMON MEAL &                      3026A70003
           PEAS FORMULA GRAIN FREE

  5LB      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82380 5   3056A70003,
           PUPPY CHICKEN MEAL                     3057A70003
           & RICE FORMULA

  5LB      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 82391 1   3044A70003
           CAT HERRING AND
           SWEET POTATO FORMULA

  4oz      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 15885 3   3072A70004
           CAT AND KITTEN
           CHICKEN AND BROWN
           RICE FORMULA

  4oz      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 15987 4   2362A70004,
           DOG KANGAROO & RED                     3044A70004
           LENTILS FORMULA
           GRAIN FREE

  4oz      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 15882 2   3022A70004
           DOG RICE AND LAMB
           MEAL LOW FAT FORMULA

  4oz      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 15877 8   3030A70004
           DOG SALMON MEAL &
           PEAS FORMULA GRAIN FREE

  4oz      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 15888 4   3057A70004
           PUPPY CHICKEN MEAL
           & RICE FORMULA

  4oz      CALIFORNIA NATURAL   7 51485 15891 5   3043A70004,
           CAT HERRING AND                        3079A70004
           SWEET POTATO FORMULA

                           Brand: EVO
  -----------------------------------------------------------
  Size     Description          UPC Code          Lot Code(s)
  ----     -----------          --------          -----------
  13.2LB   EVO DOG HERRING      7 51485 12681 4   3010A70002,
           & SALMON FORMULA                       3065A70002

  13.2LB   EVO DOG RED          7 51485 12676 0   2363A70002,
           MEAT FORMULA                           3058A70002,
           LARGE BITE                             3079A70002

  13.2LB   EVO DOG TURKEY       7 51485 12606 7   3059A70002,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3011A70002,
           LARGE BITE                             3023A70002,
                                                  3044A70002,
                                                  3002A70002,
                                                  3024A70002

  13.2LB   EVO DOG TURKEY       7 51485 12601 2   3064A70002,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3030A70002
           SMALL BITE

  13.2LB   EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12617 3   2364A70002,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3060A70002,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      3043A70002,
                                                  3042A70002

  13.2LB   EVO DOG TURKEY       7 51485 12686 9   2356A70002,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR                     3036A70002
           FORMULA

  13.2LB   EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 12671 5   3045A70002,
           FORMULA SMALL BITE                     3046A70002,
                                                  3016A70002

  15.4LB   EVO CAT AND          7 51485 41400 3   2356A70002,
           KITTEN TURKEY AND                      2366A70002,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3052A70002,
                                                  3053A70002,
                                                  3054A70002,
                                                  3058A70002,
                                                  3059A70002,
                                                  3037A70002,
                                                  3071A70002,
                                                  3072A70002

  15.4LB   EVO CAT HERRING      7 51485 41410 2   2361A70002,
           AND SALMON FORMULA                     3054A70002,
                                                  3071A70002

  15.4LB   EVO CAT TURKEY       7 51485 41405 8   2355A70004,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    2356A70004,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      2366A70004,
                                                  3053A70004,
                                                  3059A70004,
                                                  3038A70004,
                                                  3037A70004,
                                                  3073A70004

  2.2LB    EVO CAT AND          7 51485 41402 7   2361A70004,
           KITTEN TURKEY AND                      3053A70004,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3073A70004

  2.2LB    EVO CAT HERRING      7 51485 41412 6   3060A70004,
           AND SALMON FORMULA                     3044A70004

  2.2LB    EVO CAT TURKEY AND   7 51485 41407 2   3060A70004,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3044A70004
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT

  2.2LB    EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12604 3   3030A70004,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3065A70004
           SMALL BITE

  2.2LB    EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 12674 6   3045A70004,
           FORMULA SMALL BITE                     3016A70004

  28.6LB   EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12600 5   3064A70001,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3030A70001,
           SMALL BITE                             3065A70002

  28.6LB   EVO DOG HERRING &    7 51485 12680 7   3014A70001,
           SALMON FORMULA                         3017A70001,
                                                  3010A70001,
                                                  3065A70002

  28.6LB   EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 12675 3   2363A70001,
           FORMULA LARGE BITE                     3058A70001,
                                                  3079A70001

  28.6LB   EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12605 0   3059A70001,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3023A70001,
           LARGE BITE                             3044A70001,
                                                  3045A70001,
                                                  3003A70001,
                                                  3002A70001,
                                                  3079A70001

  28.6LB   EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12616 6   2366A70001,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3059A70001,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      3060A70001,
                                                  3043A70002

  28.6LB   EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12685 2   2356A70001,
           CHICKEN SENIOR                         3036A70001
           FORMULA

  28.6LB   EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 12670 8   3045A70001,
           FORMULA SMALL BITE                     3016A70001,
                                                  3011A70001,
                                                  3046A70001

  3oz      EVO CAT WILD         7 51485 41470 6   3052A70005,
           CRAVINGS TURKEY AND                    3016A70005,
           CHICKEN FORMULA TREATS                 3007A70005,
                                                  3035A70005,
                                                  3036A70005,
                                                  3068A70005

  3oz      EVO CAT WILD         7 51485 41475 1   2347A70005,
           CRAVINGS TURKEY AND                    3015A70005,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3024A70005,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT TREATS               3078A70005

  3oz      EVO CAT WILD         7 51485 41480 5   3004A70005,
           CRAVINGS HERRING                       3028A70005,
           AND SALMON FORMULA                     3003A70005,
           TREATS                                 3005A70005,
                                                  3029A70005,
                                                  2342A70005,
                                                  3078A70005,
                                                  3079A70005

  6.6LB    EVO CAT AND KITTEN   7 51485 41401 0   2355A70003,
           TURKEY AND CHICKEN                     2356A70003,
           FORMULA                                3001A70003,
                                                  3002A70003,
                                                  3052A70003,
                                                  3053A70003,
                                                  3058A70003,
                                                  3038A70003,
                                                  3039A70003,
                                                  3072A70003

  6.6LB    EVO CAT HERRING AND  7 51485 41411 9   2361A70003,
           SALMON FORMULA                         2362A70003,
                                                  3053A70003

  6.6LB    EVO CAT TURKEY AND   7 51485 41406 5   3059A70003,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3044A70003
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT

  6.6LB    EVO DOG HERRING &    7 51485 12682 1   3012A70003
           SALMON FORMULA

  6.6LB    EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 12677 7   2363A70003,
           FORMULA LARGE BITE                     3058A70003,
                                                  3078A70003

  6.6LB    EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12607 4   3002A70003,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3059A70003,
           SMALL BITE                             3023A70003,
                                                  3024A70003,
                                                  3017A70003,
                                                  3045A70003

  6.6LB    EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12603 6   3030A70003,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3064A70003
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT

  6.6LB    EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 12618 0   2366A70003,
           CHICKEN SENIOR                         3059A70003,
           FORMULA                                3060A70003,
                                                  3043A70003

  6.6LB    EVO FERRET FOOD      7 51485 12687 6   2356A70003,
                                                  3036A70003,
                                                  3037A70003

  6.6LB    EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 42101 8   2355A70003,
           FORMULA SMALL BITE                     3002A70003,
                                                  3052A70003,
                                                  3058A70003,
                                                  3038A70003,
                                                  3072A70003

  4oz      EVO CAT AND KITTEN   7 51485 12672 2   3045A70003
           TURKEY AND CHICKEN
           FORMULA

  4oz      EVO CAT HERRING AND  7 51485 15250 9   2355A70004,
           SALMON FORMULA                         2366A70004,
                                                  3052A70004,
                                                  3058A70004,
                                                  3038A70004,
                                                  3073A70004

  4oz      EVO CAT TURKEY AND   7 51485 15251 6   2357A70004,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        2361A70004,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      3054A70004,
                                                  3073A70004

  4oz      EVO DOG HERRING &    7 51485 15252 3   3059A70004,
           SALMON FORMULA                         3044A70004,
                                                  3077A70004

  4oz      EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 15206 6   3011A70004
           FORMULA LARGE BITE

  4oz      EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 15204 2   3058A70004,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3079A70004
           LARGE BITE

  4oz      EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 15201 1   3059A70004,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3045A70004,
           SMALL BITE                             3011A70004,
                                                  3002A70004

  4oz      EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 15200 4   3064A70004,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3030A70004
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT

  4oz      EVO DOG TURKEY AND   7 51485 15205 9   2366A70004,
           CHICKEN SENIOR                         3043A70004
           FORMULA

  4oz      EVO DOG RED MEAT     7 51485 15255 4   2356A70004,
           FORMULA SMALL BITE                     3036A70004

                       Brand: Health Wise
  -----------------------------------------------------------
  Size     Description          UPC Code          Lot Code(s)
  ----     -----------          --------          -----------
  5LB      HEALTHWISE PUPPY     7 51485 15202 8   3045A70004,
           CHICKEN MEAL AND                       3016A70004
           BROWN RICE FORMULA

  5LB      HEALTHWISE CAT AND   7 51485 70732 7   2353A70003,
           KITTEN CHICKEN MEAL                    2362A70003,
           AND RICE FORMULA                       3031A70003,
                                                  3071A70003

  5LB      HEALTHWISE DOG       7 5148 570775 4   3057A70003
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA

  5LB      HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70712 9   3031A70003
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA
           WEIGHT CONTROL

  5LB      HEALTHWISE DOG LAMB  7 51485 70722 8   2362A70003
           MEAL AND OATMEAL
           FORMULA

  5LB      HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70742 6   2362A70003,
           CHICKEN MEAL AND                       3043A70003
           OATMEAL FORMULA ACTIVE

  16.5LB   HEALTHWISE CAT AND   7 51485 70702 0   3064A70003
           KITTEN CHICKEN MEAL
           AND RICE FORMULA

  17.5LB   HEALTHWISE PUPPY     7 51485 70780 8   3057A70002,
           CHICKEN MEAL AND                       3067A70002
           BROWN RICE FORMULA

  17.5LB   HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70711 2   3031A70002
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA

  17.5LB   HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70721 1   2361A70002
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA
           WEIGHT CONTROL

  17.5LB   HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70741 9   2361A70002,
           LAMB MEAL AND                          2362A70002,
           OATMEAL FORMULA                        3043A70002,
                                                  3031A70002

  17.5LB   HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70701 3   3065A70002
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA ACTIVE

  35LB     HEALTHWISE PUPPY     7 51485 70730 3   2362A70001,
           CHICKEN MEAL AND                       3031A70001,
           BROWN RICE FORMULA                     3071A70001

  35LB     HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70710 5   3031A70001,
           CHICKEN MEAL AND                       3072A70001
           OATMEAL FORMULA

  35LB     HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 70720 4   2361A70001
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA
           WEIGHT CONTROL

  35LB     HEALTHWISE DOG LAMB  7 51485 70740 2   2361A70001,
           MEAL AND OATMEAL                       2362A70001,
           FORMULA                                3043A70001,
                                                  3032A70001

  38.5LB   Healthwise Chicken   7 51485 70704 4   3070A70001,
           & Oatmeal 38.5#                        3072A70001
           Bonus Bag

  18.5LB   Healthwise Chicken   7 51485 70770 9   3067A70002,
           & Rice 18.5#                           3072A70002,
           Bonus Bag                              3079A70002,
                                                  3067A70001,
                                                  3068A70002

  4oz      HEALTHWISE PUPPY     7 51485 15443 5   2362A70004,
           CHICKEN MEAL AND                       3031A70004
           BROWN RICE FORMULA

  4oz      HEALTHWISE CAT AND   7 51485 15445 9   3056A70004,
           KITTEN CHICKEN MEAL                    3057A70004
           AND RICE FORMULA

  4oz      HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 15441 1   3031A70004
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA

  4oz      HEALTHWISE DOG       7 51485 15442 8   2362A70004
           CHICKEN MEAL AND
           OATMEAL FORMULA
           WEIGHT CONTROL

  4oz      HEALTHWISE DOG LAMB  7 51485 15444 2   2362A70004,
           MEAL AND OATMEAL                       3043A70004
           FORMULA

                          Brand: Innova
  -----------------------------------------------------------
  Size     Description          UPC Code          Lot Code(s)
  ----     -----------          --------          -----------
  12LB     INNOVA DOG SALMON &  7 51485 12363 9   2361A70002,
           HERRING FORMULA                        3036A70002,
                                                  3030A70002

  12LB     INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12731 6   2361A70001,
           GRAIN FREE  BEEF &                     3057A70002,
           LAMB MEAL FORMULA                      3058A70002,
                                                  3037A70002,
                                                  3023A70002,
                                                  3022A70002,
                                                  3073A70002

  12LB     INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12728 6   2363A70002,
           GRAIN FREE SALMON                      2364A70002,
           & HERRING FORMULA                      3052A70002,
                                                  3059A70002,
                                                  3007A70002,
                                                  3073A70002

  12LB     INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12725 5   3003A70002,
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN                     3004A70002,
           & TURKEY FORMULA                       3043A70002,
                                                  3063A70002

  12LB     INNOVA CAT PRIME     7 51485 41398 3   3010A70002,
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN                     3065A70002
           & TURKEY FORMULA

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12320 2   2354A70002,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      2355A70001,
           BITE FORMULA                           2355A70002,
                                                  2363A70001,
                                                  2364A70001,
                                                  3049A70001,
                                                  3050A70001,
                                                  3066A70001,
                                                  3067A70001

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12552 7   3015A70001
           & CHICKEN LARGE BITE
           (BL)

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12554 1   3015A70001
           & CHICKEN LARGE
           BREED (BL)

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12704 0   2353A70001,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      2354A70001,
           BREED FORMULA                          3038A70001,
                                                  3057A70001,
                                                  3058A70001,
                                                  3010A70001,
                                                  3004A70001,
                                                  3073A70001,
                                                  3074A70001

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12323 3   3015A70001,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR 8                   3058A70002,
           FORMULA                                3014A70001,
                                                  3037A70001

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12326 4   2352A70001,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR                     2353A70001,
           PLUS 11 FORMULA                        3051A70001,
                                                  3052A70001,
                                                  3023A70001,
                                                  3024A70001,
                                                  3003A70001,
                                                  3073A70001

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12367 7   3032A70001,
           AND CHICKEN SMALL                      3030A70001,
           BITES FORMULA                          3029A70001,
                                                  3078A70001

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12329 5   3030A70001,
           AND CHICKEN WEIGHT                     3017A70001
           MANAGEMENT FORMULA

  30LB     INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 12332 5   2356A70001,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3057A70001,
                                                  3064A70001,
                                                  3037A70001

  30LB     INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 12740 8   2356A70001,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3051A70001,
           BREED FORMULA                          3003A70001,
                                                  3015A70002,
                                                  3066A70001,
                                                  3065A70001

  30LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12714 9   3064A70001,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3044A70001,
           BREED SENIOR FORMULA                   3063A70001

  30LB     INNOVA DOG FOOD BASE 7 51485 12553 4   3015A70002
           TURKEY AND CHICKEN
           LARGE BAG PUPPY

  30LB     INNOVA DOG FOOD BASE 7 51485 12554 1   3010A70001
           TURKEY AND CHICKEN
           LARGE BAG ADULT

                                7 51485 12555 8   3015A70001

  15LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12321 9   2354A70002,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      2355A70002,
           BITE FORMULA                           2363A70002,
                                                  3049A70002,
                                                  3050A70002,
                                                  3053A70002,
                                                  3066A70002

  15LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12335 6   3004A70002
           AND CHICKEN SMALL
           BITES FORMULA

  15LB     INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41392 1   2362A70002,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    2363A70002,
                                                  3052A70002,
                                                  3036A70002,
                                                  3037A70002,
                                                  3071A70002

  15LB     INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41389 1   2354A70002,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    2362A70001,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      2363A70001,
                                                  3046A70002,
                                                  3070A70002

  15LB     INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41607 6   2353A70002,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR                     3023A70002,
           FORMULA                                3071A70002,
                                                  3070A70002

  15LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12705 7   2354A70002,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3057A70002,
           BREED FORMULA                          3010A70002,
                                                  3011A70002,
                                                  3037A70002,
                                                  3004A70002,
                                                  3074A70002

  15LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12324 0   3058A70002,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR 8                   3037A70002,
           FORMULA                                3038A70002,
                                                  3014A70002

  15LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12327 1   2352A70002,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR                     2353A70002,
           PLUS 11 FORMULA                        3051A70002,
                                                  3007A70002,
                                                  3023A70002,
                                                  3003A70002

  15LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12330 1   3030A70002,
           AND CHICKEN WEIGHT                     3016A70002
           MANAGEMENT FORMULA

  15LB     INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 12333 2   2356A70002,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3057A70002,
                                                  3037A70002

  15LB     INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 12741 5   2356A70002,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3050A70002,
           BREED FORMULA                          3003A70002,
                                                  3015A70002,
                                                  3066A70002,
                                                  3065A70002

  15LB     INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12715 6   3064A70002,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3044A70002,
           BREED SENIOR FORMULA                   3031A70002

  5LB      INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 17732 3   2361A70003,
           GRAIN FREE BEEF &                      3057A70003,
           LAMB MEAL FORMULA                      3036A70003,
                                                  3023A70003,
                                                  3073A70003

  5LB      INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12729 3   2363A70003,
           GRAIN FREE  SALMON                     2364A70003,
           & HERRING FORMULA                      3052A70003,
                                                  3059A70003,
                                                  3007A70003

  5LB      INNOVA DOG SALMON &  7 51485 12364 6   2363A70003,
           HERRING FORMULA                        3036A70003,
                                                  3029A70003,
                                                  3065A70003

  5LB      INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12726 2   3063A70003,
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN                     3043A70003,
           & TURKEY FORMULA                       3003A70003

  5LB      INNOVA CAT PRIME     7 51485 41399 0   3011A70003,
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN                     3022A70003,
           & TURKEY FORMULA                       3065A70003

  2.2LB    INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41387 7   2363A70004,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3052A70004,
                                                  3036A70004,
                                                  3072A70004

  2.2LB    INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41391 4   2354A70004,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    2363A70004,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      3045A70004,
                                                  3072A70004,
                                                  3071A70004

  2.2LB    INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41603 8   2353A70004,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR                     3071A70004
           FORMULA

  2.2LB    INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12376 9   2354A70004,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3049A70004
           BITE FORMULA

  2.2LB    INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12373 8   3004A70004
           AND CHICKEN SMALL
           BITES FORMULA

  2.2LB    INNOVA KITTEN        7 51485 41372 3   3024A70004
           TURKEY AND CHICKEN
           FORMULA

  25LB     INNOVA DOG SALMON    7 51485 12362 2   2357A70001,
           & HERRING FORMULA                      2361A70001,
                                                  2363A70002,
                                                  3064A70001,
                                                  3030A70001,
                                                  3036A70001,
                                                  3065A70001

  25LB     INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12730 9   2361A70001,
           GRAIN FREE BEEF &                      3058A70001,
           LAMB MEAL FORMULA                      3023A70001,
                                                  3022A70001,
                                                  3036A70001,
                                                  3073A70001

  25LB     INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12727 9   2366A70001,
           GRAIN FREE  SALMON                     3001A70001,
           & HERRING FORMULA                      3038A70001,
                                                  3052A70001,
                                                  3059A70001,
                                                  3008A70002,
                                                  3007A70002

  25LB     INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 12724 8   3064A70001,
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN                     3031A70001,
           & TURKEY FORMULA                       3043A70001

  3oz      INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41301 3   3016A70005,
           AND CHICKEN TREATS                     3007A70005,
                                                  3017A70005,
                                                  3008A70005,
                                                  3053A70005

  6LB      INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41301 3   2362A70003,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    2363A70003,
                                                  3051A70003,
                                                  3052A70003,
                                                  3036A70003,
                                                  3071A70003

  6LB      INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41390 7   2354A70003,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    2364A70003,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      3045A70003,
                                                  3046A70003,
                                                  3071A70003

  6LB      INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 41608 3   2353A70003,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3023A70003
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT

  6LB      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12322 6   2354A70003,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3049A70003,
           BITE FORMULA                           3066A70003

  6LB      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12325 7   3058A70003,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR 8                   3037A70003,
           FORMULA                                3015A70003

  6LB      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12328 8   2353A70003,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR                     3051A70003,
           PLUS 11 FORMULA                        3031A70003,
                                                  3003A70003

  6LB      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12336 3   3004A70003,
           AND CHICKEN SMALL                      3032A70003
           BITES FORMULA

  6LB      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 12331 8   3031A70003,
           AND CHICKEN WEIGHT                     3016A70003
           MANAGEMENT FORMULA

  6LB      INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 12334 9   2356A70003,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3057A70003,
                                                  3038A70003

  6LB      INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 12742 2   2356A70003,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3051A70003,
           BREED FORMULA                          3015A70003,
                                                  3003A70003

  6LB      INNOVA KITTEN TURKEY 7 51485 41371 6   3025A70003
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA

  2LB      INNOVA CAT PRIME     7 51485 41404 1   3010A70004,
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN                     3065A70004
           & TURKEY FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 15995 9   2363A70004,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3052A70004,
                                                  3036A70004,
                                                  3037A70004,
                                                  3072A70004

  4oz      INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 15988 1   2354A70004,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    2363A70004,
           WEIGHT MANAGEMENT                      2364A70004,
                                                  3046A70004,
                                                  3071A70004

  4oz      INNOVA CAT TURKEY    7 51485 15998 0   2353A70004,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR                     3023A70004
           FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 15313 1   2364A70004,
           GRAIN FREE SALMON &                    3008A70004
           HERRING FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA DOG SALMON &  7 51485 12365 3   2362A70004,
           HERRING FORMULA                        4065A70004

  4oz      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 15990 4   2354A70004,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3049A70004,
           BITE FORMULA                           3054A70004,
                                                  3066A70004

  4oz      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 15300 1   2354A70004,
           AND CHICKEN LARGE                      3057A70004,
           BREED FORMULA                          3011A70004,
                                                  3003A70004

  4oz      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 15992 8   2353A70004,
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR 8                   3051A70004,
           FORMULA                                3023A70004,
                                                  3003A70004,
                                                  3074A70004

  4oz      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 15310 0   3004A70004
           AND CHICKEN SENIOR
           PLUS 11 FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 15989 8   3030A70004,
           AND CHICKEN SMALL                      3016A70004
           BITES FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 15311 7   2356A70004,
           AND CHICKEN WEIGHT                     3057A70004
           MANAGEMENT FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 15994 2   2356A70004,
           AND CHICKEN FORMULA                    3051A70004,
                                                  3015A70004,
                                                  3080A70004

  4oz      INNOVA PUPPY TURKEY  7 51485 15302 5   3044A70004
           AND CHICKEN LARGE
           BREED FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA DOG TURKEY    7 51485 15301 8   3003A70004
           AND CHICKEN LARGE
           BREED SENIOR FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA DOG PRIME     7 51485 15312 4   3003A70004
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN
           & TURKEY FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA CAT PRIME     7 51485 15315 5   3011A70004,
           GRAIN FREE CHICKEN                     3065A70004
           & TURKEY FORMULA

  4oz      INNOVA KITTEN        7 51485 15316 2   3025A70004
           TURKEY AND CHICKEN
           FORMULA

                          Brand: Karma
  -----------------------------------------------------------
  Size     Description          UPC Code          Lot Code(s)
  ----     -----------          --------          -----------
  7LB      KARMA DOG ORGANIC    7 51485 60102 1   3017A70003,
           CHICKEN FORMULA                        3008A70003,
                                                  3018A70003

  4oz      KARMA DOG ORGANIC    7 51485 15001 7   3008A70004
           CHICKEN FORMULA

                          Brand: Innova
  -----------------------------------------------------------
  Size     Description          UPC Code          Lot Code(s)
  ----     -----------          --------          -----------
  3oz      INNOVA CAT TURKEY       --             All Lot Codes
           AND CHICKEN TREATS

  EXPIRATION DATE 7/1/13 thru 9/27/13

Pictures of the recalled products' labels are available at:

         http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm345636.htm

                    About Natura Pet Products

Natura Pet Products is recognized as a trusted name behind natural
and holistic pet foods and treats.  Founded more than 20 years ago
by John and Ann Rademakers and Peter Atkins, Natura is dedicated
to providing the best natural nutrition.  Natura is committed to
making premium pet foods and treats based on nutritional science
and high-quality ingredients, combined with trusted manufacturing
processes, for complete pet health.  Lines include: Innova(R),
California Natural(R), EVO(R), HealthWise(R), Mother Nature(R) and
Karma(R).  To learn more about Natura Pet Products visit
http://www.NaturaPet.com/.


OLD REPUBLIC: Continues to Defend "Barker" Class Suit vs. ORHP
--------------------------------------------------------------
On May 22, 2009, a purported national class action lawsuit was
filed in the U.S. District Court in Birmingham, Alabama, against
Old Republic International Corporation's subsidiary, Old Republic
Home Protection Company, Inc. ("ORHP"), Barker v. Old Republic
Home Protection, alleging that ORHP paid fees to the real estate
brokers to market its home warranty contracts and that the payment
of such fees was in violation of Sections 8(a) and 8(b) of the
Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act ("RESPA").  The lawsuit
seeks unspecified damages, including treble damages under RESPA.
No class has been certified, and the action is not expected to
result in any material liability to the Company.

No further updates were reported in the Company's March 1, 2013,
Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the year ended December 31, 2012.

Old Republic International Corporation --
http://www.oldrepublic.com/-- is a Chicago based holding company
engaged in the single business of insurance underwriting.  The
Company conducts its operations through a number of regulated
insurance company subsidiaries organized into three major
segments: General Insurance Group (property and liability
insurance), Title Insurance Group, and the Republic Financial
Indemnity Group (mortgage guaranty and consumer credit indemnity
run-off business).


OLD REPUBLIC: Continues to Defend Two Class Suits vs. ORNTIC
------------------------------------------------------------
Old Republic International Corporation continues to defend its
subsidiary against two class action lawsuits pending in
Pennsylvania and Texas, according to the Company's March 1, 2013,
Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the year ended December 31, 2012.

Purported class action lawsuits are pending against the Company's
principal title insurance subsidiary, Old Republic National Title
Insurance Company ("ORNTIC"), in federal courts in two states --
Pennsylvania (Markocki et al. v. ORNTIC, U.S. District Court,
Eastern District, Pennsylvania, filed June 8, 2006), and Texas
(Ahmad et al. v. ORNTIC, U.S. District Court, Northern District,
Texas, Dallas Division, filed February 8, 2008).  The plaintiffs
allege that ORNTIC failed to give consumers reissue and/or
refinance credits on the premiums charged for title insurance
covering mortgage refinancing transactions, as required by rate
schedules filed by ORNTIC or by state rating bureaus with the
state insurance regulatory authorities.  The Pennsylvania lawsuit
also alleges violations of the federal Real Estate Settlement
Procedures Act ("RESPA").  The Court in the Texas lawsuit
dismissed similar RESPA allegations.  Classes have been certified
in the Pennsylvania lawsuit, but the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals
has reversed the earlier class certification in the Texas case.

Old Republic International Corporation --
http://www.oldrepublic.com/-- is a Chicago based holding company
engaged in the single business of insurance underwriting.  The
Company conducts its operations through a number of regulated
insurance company subsidiaries organized into three major
segments: General Insurance Group (property and liability
insurance), Title Insurance Group, and the Republic Financial
Indemnity Group (mortgage guaranty and consumer credit indemnity
run-off business).


OLD REPUBLIC: Defends "Friedman" Suit vs. ORHP in California
------------------------------------------------------------
Old Republic International Corporation is defending its subsidiary
against a class action lawsuit styled Friedman v. Old Republic
Home Protection Company, Inc., according to the Company's March 1,
2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the year ended
December 31, 2012.

On September 26, 2012, a purported national class action lawsuit
was filed against Old Republic Home Protection Company in the
Superior Court of California for Riverside County, (Friedman v.
Old Republic Home Protection Company, Inc.).  The lawsuit alleges
that the Company operates in breach of its home warranty
contracts, in breach of implied covenants of good faith and fair
dealing, in violation of various provisions of the California
Civil Code and Business and Professions Code and is guilty of
false advertising.  The stated class period is from November 24,
2004, through the present.  The lawsuit seeks declaratory relief,
injunctive relief, restitution, damages, costs and attorneys' fees
in unspecified amounts.  The firm representing the plaintiff had
previously filed similar lawsuits against the Company, which were
unsuccessful.  The Company succeeded in having the case removed to
the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California on
October 24, 2012, and believes it has strong defenses to the
allegations and to the certification of any class in this matter.

Old Republic International Corporation --
http://www.oldrepublic.com/-- is a Chicago based holding company
engaged in the single business of insurance underwriting.  The
Company conducts its operations through a number of regulated
insurance company subsidiaries organized into three major
segments: General Insurance Group (property and liability
insurance), Title Insurance Group, and the Republic Financial
Indemnity Group (mortgage guaranty and consumer credit indemnity
run-off business).


OLD REPUBLIC: Defends 9 Class Suits Alleging RESPA Violations
-------------------------------------------------------------
Old Republic International Corporation is defending nine purported
class action lawsuits alleging violations of the Real Estate
Settlement Procedures Act, according to the Company's March 1,
2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the year ended December 31, 2012.

Nine purported class action lawsuits alleging Real Estate
Settlement Procedures Act ("RESPA") violations have been filed in
the Federal District Courts, two in the Central District of
California, five in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and two
in the Western District of Pennsylvania, respectively, between
December 9, 2011, and January 4, 2013.  The lawsuits target J.P.
Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., the PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. as
successor to National City Bank, N.A., Citibank, N.A., HSBC Bank
USA, N.A., Bank of America, N.A., Fifth Third Bank, N.A., Flagstar
Bank, FSB, First Tennessee Bank, N.A., and Wachovia Bank, N.A.,
each of their wholly-owned captive insurance subsidiaries and most
or all of the mortgage guaranty insurance companies, including
RMIC, (Samp, Komarchuk, Whitaker v. J.P. Morgan Chase Bank, N.A.,
et al.; White, Hightower v. The PNC Financial Services Group,
Inc., et al; Menichino v. CitiBank, N.A., et al; Riddle v. Bank of
America, et al; Manners v. Fifth Third Bank, et al; Hill, et al.
v. Flagstar Bank, FSB, et al.; Barlee v. First Tennessee Bank,
N.A., et al.; Orange v. Wachovia Bank, N.A., et al.; and Ba, Chip,
et al. v. HSBC Bank USA, N.A., et al).

The lawsuits, filed by the same law firms, are substantially
identical in alleging that the mortgage guaranty insurers had
reinsurance arrangements with the defendant banks' captive
insurance subsidiaries under which payments were made in violation
of the anti-kickback and fee splitting prohibitions of Sections
8(a) and 8(b) of RESPA.  Each of the lawsuits seeks unspecified
damages, costs, fees and the return of the allegedly improper
payments.  A class has not been certified in any of the lawsuits.

Old Republic International Corporation --
http://www.oldrepublic.com/-- is a Chicago based holding company
engaged in the single business of insurance underwriting.  The
Company conducts its operations through a number of regulated
insurance company subsidiaries organized into three major
segments: General Insurance Group (property and liability
insurance), Title Insurance Group, and the Republic Financial
Indemnity Group (mortgage guaranty and consumer credit indemnity
run-off business).


OLD REPUBLIC: "Painter" Class Suit vs. Units Remains Pending
------------------------------------------------------------
A putative class action lawsuit filed in Missouri against
subsidiaries of Old Republic International Corporation remains
pending, according to the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K
filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the
year ended December 31, 2012.

A putative class action filed in state court in Kansas City,
Missouri, on December 7, 2006 (Painter et al. v. Old Republic
Title Company of Kansas City and Old Republic National Title
Insurance Company) alleges that the companies overcharged title
recording fees in a number of states.  No class has yet been
certified.  Though the lawsuit is not expected to result in any
material liability to the Company, the expenses of reviewing
individual closing files as a part of the discovery which the
Company has been ordered to undertake have been substantial and
may continue.

Old Republic International Corporation --
http://www.oldrepublic.com/-- is a Chicago based holding company
engaged in the single business of insurance underwriting.  The
Company conducts its operations through a number of regulated
insurance company subsidiaries organized into three major
segments: General Insurance Group (property and liability
insurance), Title Insurance Group, and the Republic Financial
Indemnity Group (mortgage guaranty and consumer credit indemnity
run-off business).


OLD REPUBLIC: Reached Tentative Deal to Settle "Hinrichs" Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
A tentative settlement was reached in January 2013 to resolve the
purported class action lawsuit titled Hinrichs v. Old Republic
Title Company, according to Old Republic International
Corporation's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended
December 31, 2012.

A purported state class action lawsuit was filed against Old
Republic Title Company in the Superior Court of California for
Orange County on January 7, 2011, on behalf of the Company's
escrow officers and escrow assistants in the State of California,
(Hinrichs v. Old Republic Title Company).  The Company filed a
demur to the complaint, and in response, the plaintiff filed an
Amended Complaint on January 5, 2012, adding another named
plaintiff.  The lawsuit alleged that the Company failed to pay
overtime, failed to calculate overtime properly, denied meal
breaks and rest breaks and failed to itemize pay statements, in
violation of the California Labor Code and seeks compensatory
damages, statutory penalties, interest, costs and attorneys' fees
for the period from January 7, 2007, to the present.

On January 11, 2013, a tentative settlement was reached calling
for the Company's payment to the plaintiffs, the class and their
lawyers.  The Company has recorded its estimated liability as of
December 31, 2012.

Old Republic International Corporation --
http://www.oldrepublic.com/-- is a Chicago based holding company
engaged in the single business of insurance underwriting.  The
Company conducts its operations through a number of regulated
insurance company subsidiaries organized into three major
segments: General Insurance Group (property and liability
insurance), Title Insurance Group, and the Republic Financial
Indemnity Group (mortgage guaranty and consumer credit indemnity
run-off business).


PFIZER INC: Shareholders' Arthritis Drug Class Action Can Proceed
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Marc Castro, writing for International Venture Capital Post,
reports that the world's biggest pharmaceutical firm now needs to
face investor allegations that executives misled them about the
arthritis drugs Celebrex and Bextra.  The judge ruled that
shareholders can proceed with the claims on the matter.

According to US District Judge Laura Taylor Swain of New York said
that allegations of Pfizer officials gave misleading and erroneous
statements about the risks with Celebrex and Bextra.  The suit
alleges that results of the studies were hid or misrepresented
especially its adverse cardiovascular effects.

This decision would allow for the filing of shareholder suits that
can be combined into a class action suit that can go to trial.
Celebrex earned nearly US$2.5 billion in sales and went on to
become one of its best-selling medications.  Bextra on the other
hand was pulled from the market in 2005 after links to an
increased risk for heart attacks and a rare skin condition was
found.

For its part, Pfizer spokesperson Chris Loder said the company is
ready to defend itself against the claims in court.  In an
interview he added," We appreciate the court's decision narrowing
the claims and look forward to presenting our case at trial."


PNC FINANCIAL: Awaits Final Okay of Interchange Fees Suit Deal
--------------------------------------------------------------
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc., is awaiting final approval
of a settlement resolving a consolidated antitrust lawsuit over
interchange fees, according to the Company's
March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31, 2012.

Beginning in June 2005, a series of antitrust lawsuits were filed
against Visa(R), MasterCard(R), and several major financial
institutions, including cases naming National City (since merged
into PNC) and its subsidiary, National City Bank of Kentucky
(since merged into National City Bank which in turn was merged
into PNC Bank, N.A.).  The cases have been consolidated for
pretrial proceedings in the United States District Court for the
Eastern District of New York under the caption In re Payment Card
Interchange Fee and Merchant-Discount Antitrust Litigation (Master
File No. 1:05-md-1720-JG-JO).  Those cases naming National City
were brought as class actions on behalf of all persons or business
entities who have accepted Visa(R) or Master Card(R).  The
plaintiffs, merchants operating commercial businesses throughout
the U.S. and trade associations, allege, among other things, that
the defendants conspired to fix the prices for general purpose
card network services and otherwise imposed unreasonable
restraints on trade, resulting in the payment of inflated
interchange fees, in violation of the antitrust laws.  In January
2009, the plaintiffs filed amended and supplemental complaints
adding, among other things, allegations that the restructuring of
Visa and MasterCard, each of which included an initial public
offering, violated the antitrust laws.  In their complaints, the
plaintiffs seek, among other things, injunctive relief,
unspecified damages (trebled under the antitrust laws) and
attorneys' fees.

In July 2012, the parties entered into a memorandum of
understanding with the class plaintiffs and an agreement in
principle with certain individual plaintiffs with respect to a
settlement of these cases, under which the defendants will
collectively pay approximately $6.6 billion to the class and
individual settling plaintiffs and have agreed to changes in the
terms applicable to their respective card networks (including an
eight-month reduction in default credit interchange rates).  The
parties entered into a definitive agreement with respect to this
settlement in October 2012.  The court granted preliminary
approval of this settlement in November 2012.  The settlement
remains subject to, among other things, final court approval.  As
a result of the previously funded litigation escrow, which will
cover substantially all of the Company's share of the Visa
portion, the Company anticipates no material financial impact from
the monetary amount of this settlement.

National City and National City Bank entered into judgment and
loss sharing agreements with Visa and certain other banks with
respect to the litigation.  All of the litigation against Visa is
also subject to the indemnification obligations described in Note
24 Commitments and Guarantees.  PNC Bank, N.A. is not named a
defendant in any of the Visa or MasterCard related antitrust
litigation nor was it initially a party to the judgment or loss
sharing agreements, but it has been subject to indemnification
obligations and became responsible for National City Bank's
position in the litigation and responsibilities under the
agreements upon completion of the merger of National City Bank
into PNC Bank, N.A.

In March 2011, the Company entered into a MasterCard Settlement
and Judgment Sharing Agreement with MasterCard and other financial
institution defendants and an Omnibus Agreement Regarding
Interchange Litigation Sharing and Settlement Sharing with Visa,
MasterCard and other financial institution defendants. If there is
a resolution of all claims against all defendants, the Omnibus
Agreement, in substance, apportions that resolution into a Visa
portion and a MasterCard portion, with the Visa portion being two-
thirds and the MasterCard portion being one-third.  This
apportionment only applies in the case of either a global
settlement involving all defendants or an adverse judgment against
the defendants, to the extent that damages either are related to
the merchants' inter-network conspiracy claims or are otherwise
not attributed to specific MasterCard or Visa conduct or damages.
The MasterCard portion (or any MasterCard-related liability not
subject to the Omnibus Agreement) will then be apportioned under
the MasterCard Settlement and Judgment Sharing Agreement among
MasterCard and PNC and the other financial institution defendants
that are parties to this agreement.  The responsibility for the
Visa portion (or any Visa-related liability not subject to the
Omnibus Agreement) will be apportioned under the pre-existing
indemnification responsibilities and judgment and loss sharing
agreements.

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. -- http://www.pnc.com/--
operates as a diversified financial services company in the United
States and internationally.  The Company's segments are Retail
Banking, Asset Management Group, Residential Mortgage Banking,
Non-Strategic Assets Portfolio, and BlackRock.  The Company was
founded in 1922 and is headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


PNC FINANCIAL: Awaits Ruling on Plea to Dismiss "White" Suit
------------------------------------------------------------
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. is awaiting a court
decision on its motion to dismiss a class action lawsuit commenced
by White, et al., according to the Company's March 1, 2013, Form
10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for
the year ended December 31, 2012.

In December 2011, a lawsuit (White, et al. v. The PNC Financial
Services Group, Inc., et al. (Civil Action No. 11-7928)) was filed
against PNC (as successor in interest to National City Corporation
and several of its subsidiaries) and several mortgage insurance
companies in the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Pennsylvania.  This lawsuit, which was brought as a
class action, alleges that National City structured its program of
reinsurance of private mortgage insurance in such a way as to
avoid a true transfer of risk from the mortgage insurers to
National City's captive reinsurer.  The plaintiffs allege that the
payments from the mortgage insurers to the captive reinsurer
constitute kickbacks, referral payments, or unearned fee splits
prohibited under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act
(RESPA), as well as common law unjust enrichment.  The plaintiffs
claim, among other things, that from the beginning of 2004 until
the end of 2010 National City's captive reinsurer collected from
the mortgage insurance company defendants at least $219 million as
its share of borrowers' private mortgage insurance premiums and
that its share of paid claims during this period was approximately
$12 million.  The plaintiffs seek to certify a nationwide class of
all persons who obtained residential mortgage loans originated,
funded or originated through correspondent lending by National
City or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates between January 1,
2004, and the present and, in connection with these mortgage
loans, purchased private mortgage insurance and whose residential
mortgage loans were included within National City's captive
mortgage reinsurance arrangements.  Plaintiffs seek, among other
things, statutory damages under RESPA (which include treble
damages), restitution of reinsurance premiums collected,
disgorgement of profits, and attorneys' fees.

In August 2012, the district court directed the plaintiffs to file
an amended complaint, which the plaintiffs filed in September
2012.  In November 2012, the Company filed a motion to dismiss the
amended complaint.

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. -- http://www.pnc.com/--
operates as a diversified financial services company in the United
States and internationally.  The Company's segments are Retail
Banking, Asset Management Group, Residential Mortgage Banking,
Non-Strategic Assets Portfolio, and BlackRock.  The Company was
founded in 1922 and is headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


PNC FINANCIAL: Continues to Defend Mortgage Suits in Penn. & N.C.
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. continues to defend a
subsidiary against mortgage litigations in Pennsylvania and North
Carolina, according to the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K
filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the
year ended December 31, 2012.

Between 2001 and 2003, on behalf of either individual plaintiffs
or proposed classes of plaintiffs, several separate lawsuits were
filed in state and federal courts against Community Bank of
Northern Virginia (CBNV) and other defendants asserting claims
arising from second mortgage loans made to the plaintiffs.  CBNV
was merged into one of Mercantile Bankshares Corporation's banks
before PNC acquired Mercantile in 2007.  The state lawsuits were
removed to federal court and, with the lawsuits that had been
filed in federal court, were consolidated for pre-trial
proceedings in a multidistrict litigation (MDL) proceeding in the
United States District Court for the Western District of
Pennsylvania, currently under the caption In re: Community Bank of
Northern Virginia Lending Practices Litigation (No. 03-0425 (W.D.
Pa.), MDL No. 1674).  In January 2008, the Pennsylvania district
court issued an order sending back to the General Court of
Justice, Superior Court Division, for Wake County, North Carolina,
the claims of two proposed class members.  These claims are
asserted in a case originally filed in 2001 and captioned Bumpers,
et al. v. Community Bank of Northern Virginia (01-CVS-011342).

                 MDL Proceedings in Pennsylvania

In October 2011, the plaintiffs filed a joint consolidated amended
class action complaint covering all of the class action lawsuits
pending in this proceeding.  The amended complaint names CBNV,
another bank, and purchasers of loans originated by CBNV and the
other bank (including the Residential Funding Company, LLC) as
defendants.  (In May 2012, the Residential Funding Company, LLC
filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11.)  The principal
allegations in the amended complaint are that a group of persons
and entities collectively characterized as the "Shumway/Bapst
Organization" referred prospective second residential mortgage
loan borrowers to CBNV and the other bank, that CBNV and the other
bank charged these borrowers improper title and loan fees at loan
closings, that the disclosures provided to the borrowers at loan
closings were inaccurate, and that CBNV and the other bank paid
some of the loan fees to the Shumway/Bapst Organization as
purported "kickbacks" for the referrals.  The amended complaint
asserts claims for violations of the Real Estate Settlement
Procedures Act (RESPA), the Truth in Lending Act (TILA), as
amended by the Home Ownership and Equity Protection Act (HOEPA),
and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).

The amended complaint seeks to certify a class of all borrowers
who obtained a second residential non-purchase money mortgage
loan, secured by their principal dwelling, from either CBNV or the
other defendant bank, the terms of which made the loan subject to
HOEPA.  The plaintiffs allege that there are approximately 50,000
members of this class.  They seek, among other things, unspecified
damages (including treble damages under RICO and RESPA),
rescission of loans, declaratory and injunctive relief, interest,
and attorneys' fees.  In November 2011, the defendants filed a
motion to dismiss the amended complaint, which was argued in
October 2012.  The court has not yet ruled on this motion.

                   North Carolina Proceedings

The plaintiffs in Bumpers make similar allegations to those
included in the amended complaint in the MDL proceedings.
Following the remand to North Carolina state court, the plaintiffs
in Bumpers sought to represent a class of North Carolina borrowers
in state court proceedings in North Carolina.  The plaintiffs
claim that this class consists of approximately 650 borrowers.
The district court in Pennsylvania handling the MDL proceedings
enjoined class proceedings in Bumpers in March 2008.  In April
2008, the North Carolina superior court granted the Bumpers
plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment on their individual claims
and awarded them approximately $11,000 each plus interest.  CBNV
appealed the grant of the motion for summary judgment.  In
September 2011, the North Carolina Court of Appeals affirmed in
part and reversed in part the granting of the plaintiffs' motion
for summary judgment.  The court affirmed the judgment on the
plaintiffs' claim that they paid a loan discount fee but were not
provided a loan discount.  It reversed the judgment on the
plaintiffs' claim that they were overcharged for settlement
services and remanded that claim for trial.  The court also held
that, in light of the Pennsylvania district court's injunction
against class proceedings having been vacated in September 2010,
the trial court may on remand consider the issue of class
certification.  In August 2012, the North Carolina Supreme Court
granted the Company's petition for discretionary review of the
decision of the North Carolina Court of Appeals.  The appeal was
argued in January 2013.  The court has not yet decided the appeal.

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. -- http://www.pnc.com/--
operates as a diversified financial services company in the United
States and internationally.  The Company's segments are Retail
Banking, Asset Management Group, Residential Mortgage Banking,
Non-Strategic Assets Portfolio, and BlackRock.  The Company was
founded in 1922 and is headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


PNC FINANCIAL: Continues to Defend Overdraft Litigation vs. Banks
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. continues to defend the
overdraft litigation involving its bank subsidiaries, according to
the Company's March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended
December 31, 2012.

Beginning in October 2009, PNC Bank, National Association,
National City Bank and RBC Bank (USA) have been named in lawsuits
brought as class actions relating to the manner in which they
charged overdraft fees on ATM and debit transactions to customers
and related matters.

National City was merged into PNC and National City's subsidiary,
National City Bank of Kentucky, wasmerged into National City Bank,
which in turn was merged into PNC Bank, N.A.  On March 2, 2012,
the Company acquired 100% of the issued and outstanding common
stock of RBC Bank (USA), the U.S. retail banking subsidiary of
Royal Bank of Canada.

                       Status of MDL Cases

Three pending lawsuits naming PNC Bank, one naming National City
Bank and two naming RBC Bank (USA), along with similar lawsuits
against numerous other banks, have been consolidated for pre-trial
proceedings in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of Florida (the "MDL Court") under the caption In re
Checking Account Overdraft Litigation (MDL No. 2036, Case No.
1:09-MD-02036-JLK ).  A consolidated amended complaint was filed
in December 2010 that consolidated all of the claims in these four
MDL Court cases.  The first case against RBC Bank (USA) pending in
the MDL Court (Dasher v. RBC Bank (10-cv-22190-JLK)) was filed in
July 2010 in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of Florida.  The other case against RBC Bank (USA) (Avery
v. RBC Bank (Case No. 10-cv-329)) was originally filed in North
Carolina state court in July 2010 and was removed to the United
States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina
before being transferred to the MDL Court.  An amended complaint
was filed in Avery in August 2010.

All of the cases now pending in the MDL Court seek to certify
multi-state classes of customers for the common law claims
(covering all states in which PNC Bank, National City Bank and RBC
Bank (USA) had retail branch operations during the class periods),
and subclasses of PNC Bank customers with accounts in Pennsylvania
and New Jersey branches, of National City Bank customers with
accounts in Illinois branches, and of RBC Bank (USA) customers
with accounts in North Carolina branches, with each subclass being
asserted for purposes of claims under those states' consumer
protection statutes.  No class periods are stated in any of the
complaints, other than for the applicable statutes of limitations,
which vary by state and claim.

PNC Bank's motion to dismiss the consolidated amended complaint
with respect to the cases pending against it and National City
Bank in the MDL Court was denied in March 2011.  In December 2011,
the plaintiffs in cases pending against PNC Bank and National City
Bank in the MDL Court moved for class certification. In light of
the settlement of a separate lawsuit on behalf of National City
Bank customers, the National City Bank plaintiffs did not move for
class certification on behalf of National City Bank customers.  As
to PNC Bank, the plaintiffs moved for class certification in
accordance with their consolidated amended complaint, except that
they did not seek a class as to the conversion claims.  In May
2012, the court granted plaintiffs' motion for class
certification.

In June 2012, PNC Bank reached an agreement to settle the three
cases pending against it in the MDL Court for $90 million.  This
settlement received preliminary approval of the court in January
2013, and remains subject to, among other things, notice to the
class and final court approval.

The customer agreements with the RBC Bank (USA) plaintiffs contain
arbitration provisions.  RBC Bank (USA)'s original motion in
Dasher to compel arbitration under these provisions was denied by
the MDL Court.  This denial was appealed to the United States
Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.  While this appeal was
pending, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in
AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion, following which the court of appeals
vacated the MDL Court's denial of the arbitration motion and
remanded to the MDL Court for further consideration in light of
the Concepcion decision.  RBC Bank (USA)'s motion to compel
arbitration, now covering both Dasher and Avery, was denied in
January 2013.  The Company has appealed the denial of the motion
to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

                     Status of Non-MDL Case

In December 2010, an additional lawsuit (Henry v. PNC Bank,
National Association (No. GD-10-022974)) was filed in the Court of
Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, on behalf of all
current citizens of Pennsylvania who are domiciled in Pennsylvania
who had or have a PNC checking or debit account used primarily for
personal, family or household purposes and who incurred overdraft
and related fees on transactions resulting from the methodology of
posting transactions from December 8, 2004, through August 14,
2010.  The Company filed preliminary objections seeking dismissal
of each of the claims in this lawsuit in March 2011.  In January
2012, the court ruled on the Company's preliminary objections,
dismissing several claims but overruling the Company's objections
with respect to claims for breach of contract and the duty of good
faith and fair dealing and for violation of Pennsylvania's
consumer protection statute.

                        Nature of Claims

The complaints in each of these lawsuits allege that the banks
engaged in unlawful practices in assessing overdraft fees arising
from electronic point-of-sale and ATM debits.  The principal
practice challenged in these lawsuits is the banks' purportedly
common policy of posting debit transactions on a daily basis from
highest amount to lowest amount, thereby allegedly inflating the
number of overdraft fees assessed.  Other practices challenged
include the failure to decline to honor debit card transactions
where the account has insufficient funds to cover the
transactions.

In the consolidated amended complaint against PNC Bank in the MDL
Court, the plaintiffs asserted claims for breach of the covenant
of good faith and fair dealing; unconscionability; conversion;
unjust enrichment; and violation of the consumer protection
statutes of Pennsylvania, Illinois and New Jersey.  In the Dasher
and Avery complaints, the plaintiffs assert the same claims,
except the state consumer protection statutory claims relate to
the North Carolina statute and the Avery complaint does not make
claims for breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing
or for conversion.  In the Henry case, the remaining claims are
for breach of contract and the duty of good faith and fair dealing
and for violation of Pennsylvania's consumer protection statute.
In their complaints, the plaintiffs seek, among other things,
restitution of overdraft fees paid, unspecified actual and
punitive damages (with actual damages, in some cases, trebled
under state law), pre-judgment interest, attorneys' fees, and
declaratory relief finding the overdraft policies to be unfair and
unconscionable.

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. -- http://www.pnc.com/--
operates as a diversified financial services company in the United
States and internationally.  The Company's segments are Retail
Banking, Asset Management Group, Residential Mortgage Banking,
Non-Strategic Assets Portfolio, and BlackRock.  The Company was
founded in 1922 and is headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


PNC FINANCIAL: "DK&D" Class Suit vs. Unit Dismissed in November
---------------------------------------------------------------
The class action lawsuit styled DK&D Properties, LLC v. National
City Bank was voluntarily dismissed in November 2012, according to
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.'s March 1, 2013, Form 10-K
filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the
year ended December 31, 2012.

In December 2008, a lawsuit was filed as a class action against
National City Bank in the Court of Common Pleas of Cuyahoga
County, Ohio (DK&D Properties, LLC v. National City Bank (Case no.
08 cv 680078)) alleging breach of contract arising from the use of
the 365/360 method of interest computation in certain commercial
promissory notes.  The plaintiffs sought to certify a class
consisting of certain Ohio commercial borrowers of National City
Bank.  The plaintiffs alleged that they obtained fixed or variable
rate commercial loans from National City Bank pursuant to
promissory notes or loan agreements setting forth annual or per
annum interest rates, that the bank's use of the 365/360 method of
calculation of interest caused the borrower to pay interest over a
calendar year at a higher rate than the per annum rate stated in
the promissory notes, and that this was a breach of the terms of
the promissory notes.  The plaintiffs sought declaratory and
injunctive relief, compensatory damages, prejudgment interest, and
attorneys' fees.

In December 2011, the court granted National City Bank's motion to
stay the case pending the decision of the Ohio Supreme Court in
JNT Properties, LLC v. KeyBank National Association (Case No. 11-
1392), which, although neither PNC Bank nor National City Bank
were parties, presented many of the same issues as those in DK&D
Properties.  In November 2012, following the decision of the Ohio
Supreme Court in JNT Properties, the plaintiffs voluntarily
dismissed their complaint without prejudice.

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. -- http://www.pnc.com/--
operates as a diversified financial services company in the United
States and internationally.  The Company's segments are Retail
Banking, Asset Management Group, Residential Mortgage Banking,
Non-Strategic Assets Portfolio, and BlackRock.  The Company was
founded in 1922 and is headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


PORTFOLIO RECOVERY: Lemberg Wins $350,000 Class Action Award
------------------------------------------------------------
On behalf of Jason Zimmerman and other consumers, Lemberg &
Associates has won a $350,000 class action award against debt
collection agency Portfolio Recovery Associates for violations of
the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).  This is the
largest reported judgment in a Fair Debt Collection class action
case.  According to Sergei Lemberg, who was labeled the "most
active consumer attorney" of 2012 by debt collection industry
insider WebRecon LLC, "We are gratified that the judge saw it fit
to impose a significant, meaningful penalty for PRA's intentional
violations of the FDCPA."

According to the Memorandum Opinion & Order issued by the U.S.
District Court, Southern District of New York, Portfolio Recovery
Associates violated the FDCPA by sending 990 consumers debt
collection correspondence that simulated legal process.  The
court's decision impacted the class that consisted of "All
consumers to whom [Portfolio Recovery Associates] sent . . . a
demand for payment letter on Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC
letterhead -- signed by Catherin M. Hedgeman, Esq. -- and
enclosing a draft summons and complaint in a form materially
identical or substantially similar to the 'Pre-Suit Package' sent
to Jason P. Zimmerman."

In determining the amount of the award, the court had to consider
several factors, which, according to the court's opinion, included
"the frequency and persistence of noncompliance by the debt
collector, the nature of such noncompliance, the resources of the
debt collector, the number of persons adversely affected, and the
extent to which the debt collector's noncompliance was
intentional."

The court noted that Portfolio Recovery Associates' "use of the
Pre-Suit Package falls squarely within the 'unscrupulous' behavior
that the FDCPA seeks to prevent" argued in favor of a larger
award, and that because the debt collector's net worth exceeds $50
million, "the sanction imposed must be sufficient to deter PRA
from engaging in abusive practices in the future."  The court
concluded that the various factors indicated "that a large
statutory award is appropriate.  That award must be sufficient to
deter a company of PRA's size from future abusive practices and
must reflect the egregious nature of what the Court concludes was
intentional misconduct."

The court determined that each class member who returned the
appropriate claim form would receive $500, that the lead
plaintiff, Mr. Zimmerman, would receive $1,500, and that any
remaining monies would be awarded "to a non-profit organization
working to curb abusive debt collection practices or to increase
consumer awareness of such practices."

Mr. Lemberg concluded, "It's fitting that a portion of the award
will go to consumer advocacy organizations.  The court's decision
should a clear message to debt collectors that they will be held
accountable when they engage in shady practices."

This release references Zimmerman v. Portfolio Recovery
Associates, LLC (U.S. District Court, Southern District of New
York, 09 Civ. 4602 (PGG)).

                 About Lemberg & Associates, LLC

The attorneys at Lemberg & Associates, LLC represent consumers in
Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Telephone Consumer Protection
Act, and lemon law cases, among others.  Sergei Lemberg can brief
you about the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, remedies
available to consumers who are victims of debt collector
harassment, and other relevant issues.

For more information, contact:

          Sergei Lemberg, Esq.
          Lemberg & Associates, LLC
          Web site: http://www.StopCollector.com
                    http://www.LembergLaw.com
          Telephone: 203-653-2250


PUBLIX SUPER: Recalls Publix Deli Tri Fruit and Grain Salad
-----------------------------------------------------------
Publix Super Markets is issuing a voluntary recall for Publix Deli
Tri Fruit and Grain Salad since it may be adulterated with
Listeria monocytogenes.  Publix received notification of the
potential contamination from their supplier, Allison's Gourmet
Kitchens.  Publix Deli Tri Fruit and Grain Salad, UPC # 41415-
39662, was distributed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South
Carolina and Tennessee.  Product was sold in pre-packaged 12 ounce
containers, and this recall involves all product sold from
December 2012 through March 26, 2013.  Pictures of the recalled
products' labels are available at:

         http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm345855.htm

"Consumption of products containing Listeria monocytogenes can
cause serious and sometimes fatal infection in young children,
frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.
Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms
such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal
pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and
stillbirths among pregnant women."

"We have issued a voluntary recall because of our commitment to
food safety," said Maria Brous, Publix media and community
relations director.  "No illnesses have been reported to date in
connection with this product.  Consumers who have purchased the
product in question may return the product to their local store
for a full refund.  Publix customers with additional questions may
call our Customer Care Center at 1-800-242-1227, or visit our
website at www.publix.com.  Customers also can contact Allison's
Gourmet Kitchens at 1-405-735-2017 or the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration at 1-888-SAFEFOOD (1-888-723-3366)."

Publix is privately owned and operated by its 157,500 employees,
with 2012 sales of $27.5 billion.  Currently Publix has 1,070
stores in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and Tennessee.
The Company has been named one of FORTUNE's "100 Best Companies to
Work For in America" for 16 consecutive years.  In addition,
Publix's dedication to superior quality and customer service is
recognized as tops in the grocery business, most recently by an
American Customer Satisfaction Index survey.  For more
information, visit the Company's Web site, http://www.publix.com/.


RESEARCH IN MOTION: Judge Tosses Shareholder Class Action
---------------------------------------------------------
Reuters reports that U.S. shareholder lawsuit accusing smartphone
manufacturer BlackBerry of seeking to fraudulently obscure its
falling market position was dismissed on March 29.

U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan in Manhattan granted the
company's motion to dismiss the proposed class-action lawsuit,
finding the plaintiffs failed to adequately allege that the
company or various executives had made deliberate and material
misstatements.  Judge Sullivan said BlackBerry clearly had failed
to keep pace with rivals in developing smartphones and information
technology, and "have paid a price for their mistakes by way of
demotions, terminations and sizable financial setbacks."

"Nevertheless, corporate failings alone do not give rise to a
securities fraud claim," Judge Sullivan said.

David Brower -- brower@browerpiven.com -- a lawyer for the
plaintiffs at Brower Piven, declined comment.  A spokeswoman for
BlackBerry did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

BlackBerry, known as Research In Motion Ltd. until recently, has
sought to achieve a turnaround with its new Z10 smartphones after
years of losing market share as consumers moved to Apple Inc.'s
iPhone as well as smartphones using Google Inc.'s Android
software.

The lawsuit, filed in 2011 by investor Robert Shemian, sought to
recover losses on behalf of U.S. shareholders who bought the
company's stock from December 2010 through June 2011.  The lawsuit
followed series of setbacks the company suffered in 2011.  The
complaint cites slowing sales of its aging BlackBerry phone
product line, delays in releasing a new operating system and a
botched launch of its first tablet.

The lawsuit contended all those setbacks were known by the company
and its executives, who nonetheless allegedly began misleading
investors, who bought its stock at inflated prices.  From Feb. 11
to June 17, 2011, when the company announced disappointing
earnings and announced layoffs, the company's stock slid from
$69.86 to $27.25.

The case is Shemian vs. Research In Motion Limited, U.S. District
Court, Southern District of New York, No. 11-04068.


RICH PRODUCTS: E. Coli Sparks Farm Rich, Market Day Product Recall
------------------------------------------------------------------
Rich Products Corporation of Buffalo, New York, is announcing a
voluntary recall of Farm Rich(R) Mini Quesadillas (PC 35635), Farm
Rich(R) Mini Pizza Slices (PC 35643 and PC 37690), Farm Rich(R)
Philly Cheese Steaks (PC 35634), Farm Rich(R) Mozzarella Bites (PC
37443 and PC 37691) and Market Day(R) Mozzarella Bites (PC 80435),
produced from November 12, 2012, to November 19, 2012, due to
possible contamination with Escherichia coli O121 bacteria ("E.
Coli O121").

Symptoms of the illness include mild to severe diarrhea and
abdominal cramps.  Blood is often seen in the stool.  Usually
little or no fever is present.  Although most healthy adults can
recover completely within 5-10 days, certain individuals can
develop a complication called Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS)
which can cause the kidneys to fail.  HUS is most likely to occur
in young children and the elderly.  The condition could lead to
serious kidney damage and even death.

The Farm Rich products were distributed in retail stores
nationwide.  Market Day(R) is a fundraising food cooperative that
distributed the Mozzarella Bites.  These products are partially
baked, dough enrobed, snack items that consumers bake or microwave
at home.

Specific product information is as follows:

   * Farm Rich(R) Mini Quesadillas are packaged in 18 oz. bags.
     The product code is 35635, the production date is
     November 14, 2012, with a Julian Date of 15822319.  The UPC
     Code is 041322356352 and the "Best By" date on the package
     is May 14, 2014.

   * Farm Rich(R) Mini Pizza Slices are packaged in 22 oz. bags.
     The product code is 35643, the production date is
     November 15, 2012, with a Julian Date of 15822320 and
     November 16, 2012, with a Julian Date 1582 2321.  The UPC
     Code is 041322356437 and the "Best By" date on the package
     is May 15 or May 16, 2014.

   * The Farm Rich(R) Mini Pizza Slices are also packaged in a
     7.2 oz. carton.  The product code is 37690, the production
     date is also November 15, 2012, with a Julian Date of 1582
     2320 and November 16, 2012, with a Julian Date 1582 2321.
     The UPC Code is 041322376909 and the "Best By" date on the
     package is May 15 or May 16, 2014.

   * Farm Rich(R) Philly Cheese Steaks are packaged in 21 oz.
     bags.  The product code is 35634, the production date is
     November 13, 2012, with a Julian Date of 1582 2318.  The UPC
     Code is 041322356345 and the "Best By" date on the package
     is May 13, 2014.

   * Farm Rich(R) Mozzarella Bites are packaged in 22 oz. bags.
     The product code is 37443, the production date is
     November 19, 2012, with a Julian Date of 1582 2324.  The UPC
     Code is 041322374431 and the "Best By" date on the package
     is May 19, 2014.

   * Farm Rich(R) Mozzarella Bites are packaged in a 7 oz.
     carton.  The product code is 37691, the production date is
     November 19, 2012, with a Julian Date of 1582 2324.  The UPC
     Code is 041322376916 and the "Best By" date on the package
     is May 19, 2014.

   * Market Day(R) Mozzarella Bites are packaged in a 22 oz.
     carton.  The product code is 80435, the production date is
     November 12, 2012, with a Julian Date of 1582 2317.  The UPC
     Code is 041322804358 and the "Best By" date on the package
     is May 12, 2014.

Pictures of the recalled products are available at:

         http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm345902.htm

At Rich's, the Company says, food safety and the safety of the
Company's consumers is of paramount importance.  Since discovering
that illnesses may be linked to its products, the Company has been
working quickly and extensively with the Food Safety Inspection
Service at USDA, as well as the Food and Drug Administration.  The
Company also is working as fast as possible to investigate and
identify the possible source of contamination.  The Company will
be keeping all customers and the public fully informed as the
Company learns more in the coming days.

Rich's has already notified all of its distributors and retailers
who have received the product in question and has directed them to
remove and destroy the affected product.

Consumers who have purchased these Farm Rich products and have any
questions should contact Farm Rich Consumer Relations at 1-888-
220-5955 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time Monday
through Friday, or visit the Company's Web site at
http://www.farmrich.com/


ROBERT SILVERMAN: Judge Rejects Bid to Use Immunity Against Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Tim Hull at Courthouse News Service reports that a California
lawyer accused of aiding and abetting human trafficking cannot use
immunity to fend off a legal malpractice class action, the 9th
Circuit ruled.

Robert Silverman faces claims over his involvement in a
trafficking scheme that allegedly bilked a group of Filipino
teachers who wanted to work in Louisiana public schools.  The
teachers said they each paid a recruitment firm $15,000, only to
end up defrauded, exploited and thrust into deep debt.

Silverman allegedly secured their non-immigrant visas, according
to the complaint, which alleged violations of the Trafficking
Victims Protection Act (TVPA) and the Racketeer Influenced and
Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), as well as breach of fiduciary
duty and legal malpractice.

Silverman made an unsuccessful bid to strike the teachers' claims
under California's anti-SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public
participation) law in 2011.  The trial court also refused to grant
Silverman immunity under the Noerr-Pennington doctrine, which
generally frees from liability those who petition the government
for help.

A jury sided with the teachers in their case against the
recruiting firm in 2012. Meantime, Silverman took the immunity
questions to the 9th Circuit.

The federal appeals court in Pasadena refused to consider the
merits of Silverman's motion for immunity from liability under the
Noerr-Pennington doctrine.  It found Wednesday that the issue is
not appealable save from a final judgment.  In a separate
unpublished memorandum, the court also denied Silverman's state-
level anti-SLAPP motion.

"Silverman's anti-SLAPP motion to strike fails because he has not
shown that the plaintiffs' state law claims of legal malpractice
and breach of fiduciary duty arise from 'an act in furtherance of
the defendant's rights of petition or free speech,'" the unsigned
decision states.

"The plaintiffs' claims focus on Silverman's obligations to them,
as his putative clients, not on his petitioning of the government
on their behalf," the judges added.  "The record contains prima
facie evidence that Silverman was, in fact, the plaintiffs'
attorney and affirmatively identified himself as such.  We need
not, at this stage, reach the merits of plaintiffs' claims or
their probability of prevailing at trial.  Whether or not the
allegations of professional malpractice are colorable, under
California law, the conduct from which they arise is not
petitioning activity within the anti-SLAPP statute."

Developed in the antitrust context, the immunity doctrine that
Silverman failed to secure takes its name from two roughly 50-
year-old U.S. Supreme Court decisions, Eastern Railroad Presidents
Conference v. Noerr Motor Freight Inc. and United Mine Workers v.
Pennington.  The court noted that the doctrine has since been
extended to other statutory schemes.

The trafficking claims are the latest legal quagmire to befall
Silverman, who caught heat in recent years for his control of the
controversial weight loss firm 1-800-Get-Thin.

Silverman resigned from 1-800-Get-Thin last year in the wake of
five patient deaths, the Los Angeles Times reported.

In September 2011, he accused Los Angeles Times business columnist
Michael Hiltzik of recording their telephone conversations without
his consent, in violation of California wiretap law. 1 800 Get
Thin LLC sued the same columnist earlier that year for writing
"fraudulent and misleading" columns about it.


ST. JOE CO: 11th Circuit Affirmed Dismissal of Securities Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit affirmed in
February 2013 the dismissal of the class action lawsuit titled
Meyer v. The St. Joe Company, et al., according to the Company's
March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company has an ongoing securities class action lawsuit against
it and certain of its current and former officers originally filed
in the United States District Court for the Northern District of
Florida (Meyer v. The St. Joe Company et al., No. 5:11-cv-00027).
A consolidated class action complaint was filed in the case on
February 24, 2011, alleging various securities laws violations
primarily related to the Company's accounting for its real estate
assets.  The complaint seeks an unspecified amount in damages.
The Company filed a motion to dismiss the case on April 6, 2011,
which the court granted without prejudice on August 24, 2011.  The
Plaintiff filed an amended complaint on September 23, 2011.  The
Company filed a motion to dismiss the amended complaint on October
24, 2011.  On January 12, 2012, the Court granted the motion to
dismiss with prejudice and entered judgment in favor of the
Company and the individual defendants.  On February 9, 2012, the
plaintiff filed a motion to alter or amend the judgment, which the
Court denied on February 14, 2012.  On March 15, 2012, the
plaintiff filed a notice of appeal to the United States Court of
Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

On February 25, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the
Eleventh Circuit filed its decision affirming the trial court's
dismissal of the complaint.

Founded in 1936, WaterSound, Florida-based The St. Joe Company --
http://www/joe.com/-- operates as a real estate development
company in Florida.  The Company operates in four segments:
Residential Real Estate, Commercial Real Estate, Rural Land Sales,
and Forestry.  The Company owns approximately 573,000 acres of
land concentrated primarily in northwest Florida.


ST. JOE CO: Continues to Pursue More Oil Spill-Related Claims
-------------------------------------------------------------
The St. Joe Company said in its March 1, 2013, Form 10-K filing
with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the year
ended December 31, 2012, that it continues to pursue additional
claims that are not included in the class settlement of claims
related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

As a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the Company has
incurred significant expenses and its properties, results of
operations and stock price have been negatively impacted.  The
Company pursued certain claims that were available through the
Gulf Coast Claims Facility to reimburse the Company for some of
these losses and have received interim compensation without
releasing the Company's claims.  In addition, on November 1, 2011,
the Company joined the Multi-District Litigation (MDL) related to
the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the United States District
Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana (In re Oil Spill by
the Oil Rig "Deepwater Horizon" in the Gulf of Mexico, on April
20, 2010, No. 10-md-2179).  The Company asserted claims for, among
other things, physical damage to property under maritime law,
claims under the Oil Pollution Act, and state law claims against a
number of defendants, including BP Exploration & Production,
Transocean, Ltd., Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. and M-I, LLC.
The Company is seeking an unspecified amount in damages.  Pursuant
to the settlement of the Company's claim related to its resort
operations, which the court approved on December 21, 2012, the
Company presently has a $7.26 million claim in the settlement
process.  The Company retains additional damages claims in the MDL
that are not included in that settlement, which the Company is
continuing to pursue.

Founded in 1936, WaterSound, Florida-based The St. Joe Company --
http://www/joe.com/-- operates as a real estate development
company in Florida.  The Company operates in four segments:
Residential Real Estate, Commercial Real Estate, Rural Land Sales,
and Forestry.  The Company owns approximately 573,000 acres of
land concentrated primarily in northwest Florida.


STANDARD FIRE: Shook Hardy & Bacon Discusses Supreme Court Ruling
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Walter L. Cofer, Esq., Greg Fowler, Esq., and Simon Castley, Esq.,
at Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP report that in a unanimous ruling, the
U.S. Supreme Court has determined that the named plaintiff in a
putative class-action lawsuit cannot keep his complaint in state
court by purporting to limit the class damages to an amount lower
than the federalcourt jurisdictional threshold set forth in the
Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 (CAFA).  Standard Fire Ins. Co.
v. Knowles, No. 11-1450 (U.S., decided March 19, 2013).  The issue
arose in a suit involving claims by an insured against an
insurance company filed in an Arkansas state court and removed
before certification to federal court under CAFA.  The federal
court remanded the matter after determining that the plaintiff's
stipulation to limit damages for the class to less than $5 million
fell beneath CAFA's threshold and that the court therefore lacked
jurisdiction to consider the claims.  Additional case details
appear in the September 13, 2012, November 8, 2012, and January
17, 2013, issues of this Report.

Granting the appeal to resolve a circuit court split on the issue,
the U.S. Supreme Court said, "Stipulations must be binding . . .
and [b]ecause his precertification stipulation does not bind
anyone but himself, Knowles has not reduced the value of the
putative class members' claims.  For jurisdictional purposes, our
inquiry is limited to examining the case ?as of the time it was
filed in state court.'"  Stating that "Knowles cannot yet bind the
absent class," the court determined that the district court erred
by failing to ignore the stipulation when considering if the
jurisdictional threshold had been met.  The Court remanded the
case for further proceedings.  Given that the lower court has
already found that, in the absence of the stipulation, the value
of the amount in controversy was slightly higher than the $5
million threshold, it is likely the matter will remain in federal
court.

While commentators have highlighted the significance of the case
to class-action defendants facing plaintiffs intent on
sidestepping CAFA and keeping their cases in state court, an open
question under the Court's ruling is whether certain agreements
that a named plaintiff enters into with a defendant before a class
is certified will later bind the class claimants.  Among these
agreements could be limitations on discovery or a narrowing of
disputed issues.


SUNPOWER CORP: To Pay $19.7MM to Settle Securities Class Suit
-------------------------------------------------------------
Courthouse News Service reports that SunPower Corp., a
manufacturer of solar panels, can pay $19.7 million to settle a
consolidated securities class action, a federal judge ruled.


UNION PACIFIC: Latham Faces Conflict of Interest Allegations
------------------------------------------------------------
Andrew Longstreth, writing for Thomson Reuters, reports that
Latham & Watkins is facing conflict of interest allegations from a
former client that is seeking to keep the firm out of one of the
biggest pending antitrust class actions.

Since last summer, Latham has been defending Union Pacific
Railroad Company in the case, which alleges a conspiracy among
railroad companies to impose artificially high fuel surcharges on
customers.  But Oxbow Carbon & Minerals LLC and a number of
related entities, which have been Latham clients, have moved to
disqualify the law firm from the case.  Oxbow, which has filed its
own antitrust lawsuit against Union Pacific over surcharges, has
argued in court papers filed last month that Latham's
representation of Union Pacific in the class action "presents a
classic conflict of interest situation."

Oxbow alleged that when Latham began representing Union Pacific in
the antitrust class action over surcharges, it became "directly
adverse to Oxbow and its interests in the matter."  Oxbow added
that Latham has received "relevant confidential business
information" that could "implicate issues and strategies" in the
antitrust class action.

Latham has contested the conflict charge.  In court papers filed
in March, the law firm argued that its representation of Union
Pacific in the class action presents no conflict of interest
because Oxbow has pursued its own case separate from the class
action.  Latham said that it purposely turned down an opportunity
to defend Union Pacific in that lawsuit.  But Latham argued that
because Oxbow is not a named plaintiff in the class action, it was
not obligated to seek a waiver from Oxbow to represent Union
Pacific.  Latham also said that its work for Oxbow had nothing to
with the issues in the surcharge class action.

"Oxbow obviously desires to punish Latham for perceived
disloyalty," Latham lawyers wrote.  "Latham regrets that a valued
client relationship has to come to that.  But Oxbow's remedy is
the one it has already exercised -- to terminate Latham and hire
counsel."

The case is In Re Rail Freight Fuel Surcharge Antitrust
Litigation, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, 07-
00489.

For Latham: Daniel Wall -- dan.wall@lw.com -- of Latham & Watkins.

For Oxbow: John Gerstein -- jack.gerstein@troutmansanders.com --
of Troutman Sanders.


UNITED BANCORP: Has Reached Deal to Settle EFTA Violation Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
United Bancorp, Inc. disclosed in its March 1, 2013, Form 10-K
filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the
year ended December 31, 2012, that it reached a settlement
agreement to resolve a class action lawsuit against a subsidiary.

A class action lawsuit was filed against United Bank & Trust (the
"Bank") in early 2011 that alleges the Bank violated the
Electronic Funds Transfer Act ("EFTA"), 15 U.S.C. Section 1693 et
seq., by allegedly failing to provide adequate notice of automated
teller machines ("ATMs") fees at the Bank's ATMs.  The plaintiff
sought class certification of the lawsuit, statutory damages,
payment of costs of the lawsuit and payment of reasonable
attorneys' fees.  In the third quarter of 2012, the class was
certified by the court.  In the fourth quarter of 2012, the
Company and the plaintiff reached a settlement agreement in this
matter.  While the Company believes that this lawsuit was without
merit, it believes that settlement of the lawsuit was prudent.
The impact of the settlement was not considered to be material on
the Company's financial statements, and was expensed in the fourth
quarter of 2012.

Founded in 1974, United Bancorp, Inc. --
http://www.unitedbancorp.com/-- is a Michigan corporation
headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and is the holding company
for United Bank & Trust, a Michigan-chartered bank organized over
115 years ago.  The Company's bank offers a full range of services
to individuals, corporations, fiduciaries and other institutions.


VERIZON WIRELESS: 41,000 Non-Union Retirees Can Sue as Class
------------------------------------------------------------
Leanna Orr, writing for aiCIO, reports that the 41,000 non-union
retirees whose pensions Verizon replaced with Prudential annuities
can sue the telecom giant as a group, a Texas judge has ordered.

This ruling is the latest in a lawsuit that nearly derailed
Verizon's $8.5 billion pension risk-transfer deal with Prudential
in December.  However, with just days to go before the agreement
expired, the Dallas court allowed it proceed.

The plaintiffs, retirees William Lee and Joanne McPartlin, may now
represent all 41,000 annuitized members in their battle against
Verizon.  A class action suit could pursue the following three
questions, according to the judge's order:

   1) Whether Verizon ran afoul of Section 102(b) of the Employee
Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) rule requiring summary plan
descriptions to disclose the circumstances that may result in a
loss or reduction of benefits.

   2) Whether Verizon violated ERISA's fiduciary duty
requirements, including the requirements to follow plan policy,
the duty of loyalty and impartiality, and to diversify plan
investments.

   3) Whether the Verizon Defendants discriminated against the
plan members whose pensions were annuitized in violation of ERISA,
since other participants were not transferred to Prudential and
lost no federal rights and or uniform federal pension protection.

Furthermore, Chief Judge Sidney Fitzwater-who has been presiding
over the complex case since the filing last November-granted class
status to the 50,000 plan members who whose pensions were not
annuitized.

For these participants, the risk transfer poses "common questions
of law and fact," the judge ordered.  He cited three such
questions: Whether the use of plan assets to purchase the annuity
contract violated the terms of the plan or ERISA; Whether the
plan's assets were used to pay expenses and costs which should
have been borne by Verizon's corporate revenues, not by the plan;
and whether buying the annuities with plan assets violated ERISA's
funding-based limits on payment of accelerated benefits and
insurance annuities.

Verizon supported the judge's granting the class statuses,
according to a memo filed with the court.  Now, if the court
dismissed the lawsuit as Verizon has asked it to, the decision
would establish precedent for similar suits by other Verizon
retirees.

"By certifying the two classes prior to granting the Verizon
defendants' motion to dismiss," Verizon attorneys wrote, "the
court will ensure that other federal courts will not need to
consider equally deficient claims brought by absent class
members."


VIRGIN MEDIA: Being Sold to Liberty for Too Little, Suit Claims
---------------------------------------------------------------
Courthouse News Service reports that Virgin Media is selling
itself too cheaply through an unfair process to Liberty Global
et al., for the equivalent of $47.87 a share or $23.3 billion,
shareholders say in a class action in New York County Supreme
Court.


WHIRLPOOL CORP: Faces Class Action Over Contaminated Park
---------------------------------------------------------
Vanessa McCray, writing for the Toledo Blade, reports that a
class-action lawsuit filed on March 28 in Sandusky County Common
Pleas Court alleges a link between a northwest Ohio cancer cluster
and toxins found at a former Whirlpool Corp. park.  The suit
against Whirlpool blames area cancer cases on polychlorinated
biphenyls, or PCBs, at the old park near Green Springs.  It seeks
punitive damages of $750 million for 10 named plaintiffs in the
Green Springs and Clyde area, as well as other class members,
including everyone who died from exposure to PCBs or other toxins
in a cancer cluster region defined in the suit as including parts
of Sandusky, Ottawa, and Erie counties.  It also seeks
compensatory damages of more than $25,000 for each plaintiff and
other class members.

"Now is the time to initiate a lawsuit.  Now is the time to begin
to answer these serious and important questions," said attorney
Joe Albrechta, of the Fremont and Toledo law firm Albrechta and
Coble, which filed the suit, at a March 28 news conference.

The suit states Whirlpool "knew or should have known that dumping"
or allowing toxic materials at the park "would injure its
neighbors."  Grist Mill Creek LLC of Fremont, listed as a
defendant, purchased the park property in 2008.  The suit alleges
Grist Mill Creek "failed to decontaminate" the site.  One of the
company's principals, Jonathan Abdoo, had planned to build a home
there but those plans were halted after the contamination was
discovered, attorneys previously reported.

Whirlpool spokesman Kristine Vernier said in a written statement
the company is reviewing the lawsuit and is working with the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency and Ohio Environmental Protection
Agency to address issues at its former park.

"As a member of the community for over 60 years, with more than
3,000 employees in the area, we are also very interested in
figuring out the facts behind this ongoing issue," the statement
said.

A reporter's request for an interview was denied.

At least 35 children in the cluster area have been diagnosed with
cancer; four of those children have died.  Last year, the U.S. EPA
found elevated levels of PCBs, considered probable human
carcinogens, at the park.  Ohio Department of Health spokesman
Tessie Pollock said there's been no cause or specific site linked
to the cancer cases.

Grist Mill Creek attorney Tom Bowlus denied liability, called the
suit "premature," and said it does not establish a connection
between the park site and cancer cases.

"They haven't shown that anyone was exposed to it or how it would
cause cancer in anybody, much less the plaintiffs," he said.

The property owner has cooperated with Whirlpool as well as state
and federal agencies to assess site contamination, Mr. Bowlus
said.

The class-action suit is not connected with the work of Alan
Mortensen, a Salt Lake City attorney who represents 12 clients
from the area, including families who have lost children to
cancer.  He has not filed legal action, but the families hired an
environmental consultant to try to determine the cancer cluster's
cause.

Mr. Mortensen said his clients have no involvement with the suit.

Attorney John Coble, of Albrechta and Coble, said his clients
wanted to initiate the suit now and also "get to the bottom" of
the problem and fix it as best as it can be fixed.  More answers
and information will come through the discovery process as the
court case progresses, he said.

Among the plaintiffs is Tim Lagrou of Fremont, whose wife
Christina died in 2006 at age 23 from large cell lymphoma, the
suit states.  Mrs. Lagrou visited and was raised near the former
park, and her mother used the park while she was pregnant with
Mrs. Lagrou, according to the suit.  It alleges her death is the
result of exposure to toxic chemicals at the park.

Mr. Lagrou said she was in good health until less than a year
before her death.

"It just kind of hit me, maybe this had something to do with it,"
he said at the news conference for the suit.  "The whole time she
was sick, she would ask me why."

The class-action suit seeks to include those who have been harmed
by exposure to PCBs or other toxins, those who visited the former
park between 1953 and 2008, and those who own nearby property.
The suit also asks for the creation of medical monitoring and
cleanup funds.

According to The News-Messenger, the Abdoos were first made aware
of toxic materials on the site after the EPA launched its
investigation in 2012.

The suit alleges Grist Mill Creek breached its duty of ordinary
care to neighbors by permitting toxic materials to remain at
Whirlpool Park and that the company knew or should have known
permitting those materials would injure surrounding neighbors.

Mr. Bowlus said the Abdoos bought the Whirlpool Park property with
the intention of building on the site.

The class action lawsuit names all people who have died or
suffered a personal injury to the claim.  People who visited or
used Whirlpool Park between 1953 and 2008 and anyone who owns
property within 4,000 feet of Whirlpool Park also are named as
plaintiffs in the suit.

In their prayer for relief, Mr. Albrechta asks for $25,000 for the
named plaintiffs -- state maximum for compensatory damages.  The
plaintiffs ask for $750 million in punitive damages, which would
cover all members named in the class.

The exact number of people represented in the suit could not be
determined without information from Whirlpool, Mr. Albrechta wrote
in the complaint, but attorneys claim no fewer than 1,000 people
are members of the class.

"That number was thought about very carefully," Mr. Albrechta said
at the news conference.  "According to the Web site owned by
Whirlpool Corporation, they make $19 billion a year in sales.
This is tantamount to two weeks of sales for Whirlpool
Corporation.

"That amount of money, only the punitive portion, would go a long
way toward helping the families in our community restore the loss
that has occurred."


* Porter Wright Discusses How Employers Can Avert Class Actions
---------------------------------------------------------------
Jason E. Starling, Esq. -- jstarling@porterwright.com -- at Porter
Wright Morris & Arthur LLP, reports that all too often it seems
employers are entirely unaware of the steps they can take to
proactively protect themselves from employment litigation.
Instead, employers and their attorneys do not address potential
issues until litigation has actually been threatened or filed, by
which time preventative measures have likely become a moot point.
Yet, the law is providing more and more innovative opportunities
to strategically protect an employer in ways much cheaper than
actual litigation.  This protection can reduce an employer's
potential monetary exposure for labor and employment matters by
either minimizing litigation or by placing an employer in a
position of greater strength should litigation arise.

Written agreements signed by new hires is one of these innovative
opportunities.  Most employers are undoubtedly aware of the basic
written agreements for new hires.  For example, a written
authorization to deduct from the employee's final paycheck any
debts owed to the company or the value of any company property not
returned at termination.  Another common example includes a basic
non-disclosure agreement prohibiting the employee from disclosing
the employer's confidential information both during and after
employment (including the all-important fee-shifting provision if
an employer successfully pursues a claim against an offending
employee).  Some employers may also be aware of the more advanced
examples such as continuing (as opposed to one-time)
authorizations for background checks or a non-competition
agreement.  Finally, only a slim number of employers may be aware
of one of the most advanced examples; namely, a statute-of-
limitations waiver reducing the time to file a lawsuit under
Ohio's anti-discrimination law from six years to six months.

These examples just scratch the surface of how employers can use
written agreements with new hires to protect themselves from
litigation, unfair competition, and the myriad of other issues
that arise under federal, state, and local law.  One new option
that has now become increasingly available for employers is the
class action waiver and arbitration agreement.

The current impetus for these types of agreements comes from the
U.S. Supreme Court's decision in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion,
131 S.Ct. 1740, 179 L.Ed.2d 742 (2011).  There, the high court
upheld an agreement between AT&T and a customer requiring claims
by the customer to be arbitrated and requiring the customer to
waive his or her right to a class action.  The AT&T agreement also
had a number of clever provisions strategically designed to reduce
the cost and expense of any legal dispute.  Specifically, (1) a
requirement that the customer provide AT&T with 30 days to provide
an offer of settlement before the customer could file for
arbitration, (2) a requirement that AT&T need only pay arbitration
costs for non-frivolous claims, (3) a provision stating that for
claims of $10,000 or less, the customer may choose a form of
expedited arbitration where the case could be heard via telephone
or based upon written submissions only, and (4) a provision
stating that either party could proceed in the very inexpensive
and quick small claims court in lieu of arbitration.

Management-side labor and employment attorneys have built upon
Concepcion's approval of class action waiver and arbitration
agreements.  They have done so by incorporating the waiver and
arbitration provisions into employment agreements with the
specific purpose of avoiding class actions or collective actions
(i.e., the Fair Labor Standards Act's version of a class action)
that can create substantial monetary risk for an employer.  In
particular, class action waivers and arbitration agreements can
try to minimize that risk even where an employer admittedly erred
under the law.

Take, for example, an employer who clearly failed to comply with
the Worker Adjustment Retraining and Notification Act (WARN),
which requires a covered employer to provide 60 days' notice or 60
days' pay to employees suffering what the law defines as a "plant
closing" or a "mass layoff."  If one employee files suit alleging
a violation of the WARN Act, the liability on back pay is 60 days'
worth (plus, of course, any penalties, costs, or attorneys' fees
available under WARN).  However, if that employee files a class
action, and there were 300 employees terminated and not provided
notice or pay, then all of a sudden the employer is facing
liability 300 times greater than on the individual claim.  The
other 299 employees may have never even thought to consult an
attorney and may have never brought a lawsuit against the company,
but because one employee did consult an attorney who filed a class
action all 300 employees (assuming class certification by the
court) are now all pursuing claims against the employer.

On that point, another reason for filing class or collective
actions is to convert an otherwise economically-unviable lawsuit
into an economically viable one by aggregating numerous claims.
This allows the plaintiffs' bar to view the lawsuit as worthwhile
to pursue.  For example, if an employer is mistaken as to whether
a group of 100 call-center employees are entitled to overtime, it
is very unlikely that a plaintiffs' attorney would take a single
employee's claim for $300.00 in the hope that the FLSA's fee-
shifting provision would eventually provide a payday worth the
attorney's time.  If, on the other hand, a plaintiffs' attorney
can proceed as a collective action and have the 100 call-center
employees opt in to the action for their $300.00, then the case
would be worth $30,000 (plus, of course, any penalties or
attorneys' fees available under the FLSA).  That is a more
attractive proposition to the plaintiffs' attorney and may be
viewed as more worthwhile to file and pursue.  Of course, think
about a situation where the mistake was $3,000 per employee over a
three-year period (the maximum statute of limitations for FLSA
claims).  Then, the potential base liability expands to
$300,000.00, as opposed to $3,000.00 which would not be worth a
plaintiffs' attorneys' time.  Or, think about a situation where
the FLSA error involves 1,000 employees company-wide.  Then, the
potential base liability expands to $3,000,000.00 as opposed to
$3,000.00.

Class action waivers and arbitration agreements can legally and
permissibly nullify these incentives for plaintiffs' attorneys
and, in doing so, protect the employer.  On the first example
above, a class action waiver and arbitration agreement would have
required those employees who obtained an attorney to pursue their
claims on an individual basis, and would have prevented the
activist employees from recruiting the uninterested employees
through a class action.  Only if the uninterested employees could
be persuaded to pursue their own case, would there be claims
brought on their behalf.  Therefore, if the uninterested employees
do nothing, the employer has at least diminished its liability
even though, in that example, the employer clearly violated the
law.

On the second example above, a class action waiver and arbitration
agreement would have made the FLSA claims less important to the
plaintiffs' bar because there would be less money at stake on an
individual basis.  Very few, if any, plaintiffs' attorneys would
want to spend the time and effort arbitrating a $300.00 claim, or
even a $3,000.00 claim.  Again, the employer has once again
diminished the potential liability it may face by shaping the
practical incentives in its favor.  Also, think about those clever
provisions in the Concepcion arbitration agreement.  For an FLSA
case where the potential liability for a single employee is
$300.00, the Concepcion agreement would have allowed the employer
30 days in which to settle by simply paying the $300.00 to the
employee, further minimizing any incentive to arbitrate solely for
speculative penalties or attorneys' fees.  Alternatively, the
Concepcion agreement would have allowed for expedited arbitration
that would drastically reduce attorneys' fees for a $300.00 claim
because arbitration is generally more informal than court
litigation.  This protects against a situation where a plaintiffs'
attorney deliberately runs up the bill hoping that the court will
provide a good fee-shifting award that will eventually make the
claim worthwhile.  These are just some of the clever ways to shape
the incentives and liabilities that make certain types of labor
and employment litigation expensive.

Fortunately for employers, class action waivers in the labor and
employment context have found increasing approval in the courts.
In Killion v. KeHE Distributors, 885 F. Supp. 2d 874 (N.D. Ohio
2012), which was a recent federal district court case from the
Northern District of Ohio, Judge Jack Zouhary found that a
"collective action waiver is not offensive to the FLSA."  He
upheld a collective action waiver for FLSA claims, relying in part
upon the Concepcion decision by stating "that [the] policy [in
Concepcion] applies in any context, including arbitrations that
limit collective actions under the FLSA."  This case is quite
helpful to an employer looking to use a class action waiver and
arbitration agreement to remove an employee's or plaintiffs'
attorneys' incentives and benefits in bringing FLSA claims.

Other federal courts outside Ohio are increasingly reaching the
same results.  For example, in Parisi v. Goldman, Sachs & Co., No.
11-5229-cv, 2013 WL 1149751 (2nd Cir. Mar. 21, 2013), the Second
Circuit found that the right to proceed in a class action under
Title VII could be waived.  This Second Circuit case is also
notable because it can be read as implicitly overruling a district
court case from New York that took the minority position by
holding that the right to proceed in a collective action under the
FLSA cannot be waived.  This implicit overruling represents a
positive development in the law for class action waivers and
arbitration agreements in the employment context.

Even Ohio state courts have joined in citing the Concepcion
decision with approval and upholding class action waivers and
arbitration agreements.  In Wallace v. Ganley Auto Group, 8th
Dist. No. 95081, 2011-Ohio-2909, the Eighth District court of
appeals held that a class action waiver and arbitration agreement
were enforceable in the context of the Consumer Sales Practices
Act (CSPA).  The CSPA is a statute that, like all the labor of
employment laws, has a horde of case law citing and discussing the
strong underlying public policy of protecting the vulnerable
plaintiff.  Thus, if Ohio courts are willing to uphold class
action waivers and arbitration agreements for CSPA claims, then
Ohio courts would also likely be willing to uphold such agreements
for claims under Ohio's anti-discrimination laws.

The point of this discussion is that there are new and innovative
ways for an employer to protect itself through agreements with new
hires.  However, employers that want to implement such agreements
must use a labor and employment attorney who is skilled in
drafting them.  Arbitration agreements can be heavily scrutinized
by the courts and, if they are too oppressive to the employee
particularly where labor and employment laws are at issue, they
will still be invalidated under general contract principles
regardless of the Concepcion decision and the case law that
follows it.  An employer's labor and employment attorney should
know the nuances of the case law. Language and terms in the class
action waivers and arbitration agreements are critically
important.

Also, employers will want their labor and employment attorney to
understand the nuances of the types of claims that should be
subjected to a class action waiver and arbitration.  For example,
it may make sense to arbitrate only wage and hour claims, or only
wage and hour claims under a certain amount individually.
Wrongful termination claims may be inappropriate for arbitration
because the appellate review of arbitration awards is nowhere near
as meaningful as appellate review of court decisions or jury
trials.  Perhaps the employer will want the greater certainty of
meaningful appellate review for wrongful termination claims where
liability can be large depending on how much money the plaintiff-
employee earned.  Alternatively, perhaps the employer wants to use
a class action waiver and arbitration agreements for low-paid
employees (e.g., minimum-wage employees in industries such as
retail) where potential liability is small because wages are low
and the costs associated with litigating in court versus the lower
costs of arbitrating justify moving claims by low-paid employees
to arbitration notwithstanding lack of more meaningful appellate
review.  Finally, a potential downside of arbitration generally is
that the relative ease of pursuing arbitration as opposed to a
lawsuit may prompt employees to file claims for minimal slights
that they otherwise might have ignored.  However, either limiting
the scope of claims subject to arbitration or using clever
provisions such as those in Concepcion can work to minimize this
particular downside.  These are all the types of nuances that must
be considered in analyzing how to effectively use a class action
waiver and arbitration agreement to minimize an employer's
potential liability.


* Winston & Strawn Discusses Class Action Waivers in Arbitration
----------------------------------------------------------------
Robert S. Whitman, Esq. at Winston & Strawn LLP reports that most
national financial-services companies have a substantial presence
in New York.  Despite the obvious charms of life in the Big Apple,
it is fraught with uncertainty these days for employers who are
looking to use pre-dispute arbitration agreements to avoid class
actions with their employees.

Here's the dilemma: A single-claimant arbitration, while always
potentially dangerous, is nonetheless a familiar and comfortable
environment for financial-services employers.  Given the
industry's strong tradition of arbitration of employment and
customer claims, defending employment claims by individuals in
arbitration, even in high-value cases involving Managing Directors
and other senior executives, presents known and usually
quantifiable risks.

Arbitration on a class or collective basis, however, is the
opposite -- a potential nightmare scenario that, most management
lawyers agree, is devoutly to be avoided.

The solution, especially after the Supreme Court's one-two punch
on class arbitration in 2010 and 2011, appeared to be readily at
hand: arbitration agreements with class action waivers.  First the
Court held, in Stolt-Nielsen S.A. v. Animalfeeds Int'l Corp, that
an arbitration panel exceeded its authority under the Federal
Arbitration Act ("FAA") by directing arbitration on a class basis
where the parties had not agreed to such procedures.  Next came a
decision that few observers expected, when the Court held in AT&T
Mobility v. Concepcion that the FAA pre-empts a California rule
that deemed class action waivers unconscionable, effectively
declaring that waivers are permissible and cannot be undermined by
state contract law doctrines.

But within the Second Circuit, the answer has not been so simple.
A series of recent court decisions within the Circuit has left the
law on class arbitration in flux and employers wondering whether
waivers such as the one approved in Concepcion will survive here.

Fortunately, developments on two successive days in March offered
glimmers of hope.  The first development, on March 20, was the
oral argument before a Second Circuit panel in two similar but
unrelated appeals testing whether arbitral class action waivers
can survive:

In Raniere v. Citigroup, District Judge Robert Sweet held,
notwithstanding Concepcion, that the Fair Labor Standards Act
("FLSA") conveys a substantive right to proceed by a collective
action, and that such right cannot be waived via an arbitration
agreement's explicit preclusion of collective proceedings.  At
oral argument, Citi's contentions to the contrary appeared to find
a receptive audience in the Circuit panel, offering reason to
believe that the judges were signaling an inclination to reverse
and hold that the right to pursue a collective action is
procedural, not substantive, and therefore amenable to waiver in
arbitration.

In Sutherland v. Ernst & Young, another wage-hour case, District
Judge Kimba Wood held that a class waiver was unenforceable
because, in light of the anticipated costs of an individual
arbitration and the relatively low amount of damages at stake, the
claimant could not effectively vindicate her rights without class
or collective procedures -- even though E&Y had agreed to pay all
forum costs.  Judge Wood's decision was based in large part on
American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant, an antitrust
case in which the Second Circuit held that a class waiver was
unenforceable where its effect was to render a claimant
economically unable to pursue his claim individually.  AmEx III,
as that case is known, is now pending before the Supreme Court,
and while both sides at the Sutherland argument took pains to
explain why they win regardless of how the High Court decides that
case, the judges seemed inclined to "wait and see" what the Court
does before resolving Sutherland.

The second development, on March 21, was the appellate court's
reversal in Parisi v. Goldman Sachs, in which the Second Circuit
appeared to have little difficulty rejecting a District Court
ruling that Title VII plaintiffs have an unwaivable right to
pursue their claims on a class-wide "pattern or practice" basis,
notwithstanding an arbitration agreement that bars class
proceedings.  Referring to the lower court's conclusion that
individual (i.e., non-class) arbitration "would preclude [Parisi]
from vindicating her right to bring a substantive 'pattern-or-
practice' claim under Title VII," the court held: "[S]uch a right
does not exist. . . . [I]n Title VII jurisprudence, 'pattern-or-
practice' simply refers to a method of proof and does not
constitute a freestanding cause of action."

All of this is good news for employers looking to enforce explicit
class action waivers in their arbitration agreements.  What about
those whose agreements are silent on class actions? While Stolt-
Nielsen would appear to mean that such agreements cannot be
construed to permit class arbitration, the Second Circuit in Jock
v. Sterling Jewelers held, in a 2-1 decision issued in 2011, that
a clause that said nothing about class procedures, but called for
arbitration of "any dispute, claim, or controversy," implicitly
did authorize class arbitration proceedings, despite Stolt-
Nielsen.

Jock's days may be numbered.  On March 25, the Supreme Court heard
argument in Oxford Health Plans LLC v. Sutter, addressing whether
an arbitrator may determine that parties agreed to authorize class
arbitration within the meaning of Stolt-Nielsen based solely on
broad language requiring arbitration of any dispute under their
agreement.  The Third Circuit in Sutter, relying in part on Jock,
answered this question in the affirmative, whereas the Fifth
Circuit, in Reed v. Florida Metropolitan University, expressly
disagreed with Jock.  The Court granted certiorari in Sutter to
resolve the Circuit-split, and many observers believe the Fifth
Circuit's view will hold sway with the Justices.

To complicate matters further, the NLRB's decision in D.R. Horton
remains on the books -- for now -- even as numerous courts around
the country have disagreed with or refused to follow it. D.R.
Horton held that class action waivers in arbitration agreements
contravene the National Labor Relations Act.  The case is pending
on appeal in the Fifth Circuit, and aside from the merits (or lack
thereof) of the Board's holding, the decision is additionally
called into question by doubts about the constitutionality of
certain recess appointments to the Board.

Amidst all this uncertainty, the financial-services industry
received a bit of welcome news in February when FINRA's Office of
Hearing Officers held, in an enforcement action against Charles
Schwab, that the class action waiver in the company's customer
arbitration agreements was enforceable under Concepcion.  The
Office did not opine on whether waivers in employment arbitration
agreements would be permissible, but there is nothing in the
decision to suggest that it would not take a similar view in that
context.

So what is a financial-services employer in the Second Circuit to
do while we wait and see how these issues will be resolved?
There appear to be four options:

Get out of Gotham -- If you have the option to venue a case
outside the Second Circuit where the law is more favorable (as
suggested above, the Fifth Circuit seems especially welcoming
these days), take it.

Stay in court -- If you don't have an explicit class action
waiver, or you are concerned that your waiver might not be upheld,
then you may want to forego arbitration altogether and defend the
case in court (assuming it is brought there initially).  You will
lose the benefit of your bargain to arbitrate, but at least you
will have the procedural protections and appeal rights that you
would lose in a class arbitration.

Enforce the waiver and take your chances -- Some courts within the
Second Circuit have approved waivers and rejected Raniere and its
ilk.  For example, Judge Barbara Jones in LaVoice v. UBS Financial
Services upheld a class action waiver, refusing to follow both
Raniere and D.R. Horton.

Continue to watch and wait -- As suggested above, greater clarity
may be in sight.  With Parisi, the upcoming Second Circuit rulings
in Raniere and Sutherland, and the Supreme Court's decisions in
AmEx III and Sutter, we may have a lot more clarity by the summer
or fall of 2013 than seemed possible a few months ago.  If
employers can hold out a little longer, they may be pleased by
where the law ends up.


                        Asbestos Litigation


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Select Income Will Not Remove Fibro Assets
-----------------------------------------------------------
Select Income REIT said it will not remove asbestos-containing
properties, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "Certain of our real estate assets contain
hazardous substances, including asbestos. We believe the asbestos
at our properties is contained in accordance with current
environmental regulations and we have no current plans to remove
it. If these properties were demolished today, certain
environmental regulations specify the manner in which the asbestos
must be removed and we could incur substantial costs complying
with such regulations. Certain of our industrial lands in Hawaii
may require environmental remediation, especially if the use of
those lands is changed; however, we do not have any present plans
to change the use of those land parcels or to undertake this
environmental cleanup. We do not have any insurance designated to
limit any losses that we may incur as a result of known or unknown
environmental conditions which are not caused by an insured event,
such as, for example, fire or flood. However, as of December 31,
2012 and 2011, accrued environmental remediation costs totaling
$8,644 and $12,215, respectively, were included in accounts
payable and accrued expenses in our consolidated balance sheets.
These accrued expenses relate to maintenance of our properties for
current uses. The reduction in the accrued balance during 2012
reflects remediation costs paid during 2012. We do not believe
that there are environmental conditions at any of our properties
that will have a material adverse effect on us. However, no
assurances can be given that such conditions are not present in
our properties or that other costs we incur to remediate
contamination will not have a material adverse effect on our
business or financial condition. Charges for environmental
remediation costs are included in other operating expenses in the
consolidated statements of income and comprehensive income."

Select Income REIT is a real estate company formed to primarily
own and invest in net leased, single tenant properties.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: General Electric Had $2.9B Reserve at Dec. 31
--------------------------------------------------------------
General Electric Company's total reserves related to environmental
remediation, including asbestos claims, were $2.988 billion at
December 31, 2012, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing
with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal
year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "We are involved in numerous remediation
actions to clean up hazardous wastes as required by federal and
state laws. Liabilities for remediation costs exclude possible
insurance recoveries and, when dates and amounts of such costs are
not known, are not discounted. When there appears to be a range of
possible costs with equal likelihood, liabilities are based on the
low end of such range. It is reasonably possible that our
environmental remediation exposure will exceed amounts accrued.
However, due to uncertainties about the status of laws,
regulations, technology and information related to individual
sites, such amounts are not reasonably estimable. Total reserves
related to environmental remediation, including asbestos claims,
were $2,988 million at December 31, 2012."

General Electric Company (GE) is a diversified technology and
financial services company.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Xylem Indemnifies ITT & Exelis From Liabilities
----------------------------------------------------------------
Xylem Inc. continues to indemnify ITT Corporation and Exelis from
obligations that include asbestos claims, according to the
Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

In 2011, Xylem separated from its parent company, ITT Corporation
("the Spin-off"). As part of the Spin-off, ITT, Exelis, and Xylem
will indemnify each of the other parties with respect to the
parties' assumed or retained liabilities under the Distribution
Agreement and breaches of the Distribution Agreement or related
spin agreements. ITT's indemnification obligations include
asserted and unasserted asbestos and silica liability claims that
relate to the presence or alleged presence of asbestos or silica
in products manufactured, repaired or sold prior to the
Distribution Date, subject to limited exceptions with respect to
certain employee claims, or in the structure or material of any
building or facility, subject to exceptions with respect to
employee claims relating to Xylem buildings or facilities. The
indemnification associated with pending and future asbestos claims
does not expire. Xylem has not recorded a liability for matters
for which we will be indemnified by ITT or Exelis through the
Distribution Agreement and we are not aware of any claims or other
circumstances that would give rise to material payments from us
under such indemnifications.

Xylem is an equipment and service provider for water and
wastewater applications with a broad portfolio of products and
services addressing the full cycle of water, from collection,
distribution and use to the return of water to the environment.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Forum Energy Subsidiary Had $250,000 Liability
---------------------------------------------------------------
Forum Energy Technologies, Inc.'s subsidiary had a liability of
$250,000 net of anticipated insurance recoveries of $1,000,000,
for the estimated indemnity cost associated with the resolution of
its current open claims and future claims related to asbestos-
containing product liability actions, according to the Company's
Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "One of our subsidiaries has been and
continues to be named as a defendant in asbestos related product
liability actions. The actual amounts expended on asbestos-related
claims in any year may be impacted by the number of claims filed,
the nature of the allegations asserted in the claims, the
jurisdictions in which claims are filed, and the number of
settlements. As of December 31, 2012, our subsidiary had a
recorded liability of $250,000 net of anticipated insurance
recoveries of $1,000,000, for the estimated indemnity cost
associated with the resolution of its current open claims and
future claims anticipated to be filed during the next five years.

"Due to a number of uncertainties that may result in significant
changes in the current estimate, the actual costs of resolving
these pending claims could be substantially higher than the
current estimate. Among these are uncertainties as to the ultimate
number and type of claims filed, the amounts of claim costs, the
impact of bankruptcies of other companies with asbestos claims or
of our insurers, and potential legislative changes and
uncertainties surrounding the litigation process from jurisdiction
to jurisdiction and from case to case. In addition, future claims
beyond the five-year forecast period are possible, but the accrual
does not cover losses that may arise from such additional future
claims and, therefore, we have not accrued a liability for such
additional future claims.

"Significant costs are incurred in defending asbestos claims and
these costs are recorded at the time incurred. Receipt of
reimbursement from our insurers may be delayed for a variety of
reasons. In particular, if our primary insurers claim that certain
policy limits have been exhausted, we may be delayed in receiving
reimbursement as a result of the transition from one set of
insurers to another. Our excess insurers may also dispute the
claims of exhaustion, or may rely on certain policy requirements
to delay or deny claims. Furthermore, the various per occurrence
and aggregate limits in different insurance policies may result in
extended negotiations or the denial of reimbursement for
particular claims."

Forum Energy Technologies, Inc. is an oilfield products company,
serving the subsea, drilling, completion, production and
infrastructure sectors of the oil and natural gas industry.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Badger Meter Continues to Defend PI Lawsuits
-------------------------------------------------------------
Badger Meter, Inc., continues to defend itself against numerous
lawsuits alleging personal injury as a result of exposure to
asbestos manufactured by third parties, according to the Company's
Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

Like other companies in recent years, the Company is named as a
defendant in numerous pending multi-claimant/multi-defendant
lawsuits alleging personal injury as a result of exposure to
asbestos, manufactured by third parties, and integrated into or
sold with a very limited number of the Company's products. The
Company is vigorously defending itself against these claims.
Although it is not possible to predict the ultimate outcome of
these matters, the Company does not believe the ultimate
resolution of these issues will have a material adverse effect on
the Company's financial position or results of operations, either
from a cash flow perspective or on the financial statements as a
whole. This belief is based in part on the fact that no claimant
has proven or substantially demonstrated asbestos exposure caused
by products manufactured or sold by the Company and that a number
of cases have been voluntarily dismissed.

Badger Meter, Inc. is a manufacturer and marketer of products
incorporating liquid flow measurement and control technologies
serving markets globally.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: MYR Group Continues to Defend Claims at Dec. 2012
------------------------------------------------------------------
MYR Group Inc. continues to defend itself from numerous asbestos-
related claims concerning historic operations of a predecessor
affiliate, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company is routinely subject to other civil claims, litigation
and arbitration, and regulatory investigations arising in the
ordinary course of its present business as well as in respect of
its divested businesses. Some of these claims and litigations
include claims related to the Company's current services and
operations, and asbestos-related claims concerning historic
operations of a predecessor affiliate. The Company believes that
it has strong defenses to these claims as well as adequate
insurance coverage in the event any asbestos-related claim is not
resolved in its favor. These claims have not had a material impact
on the Company to date, and the Company believes that the
likelihood that a future material adverse outcome will result from
these claims is remote. However, if facts and circumstances change
in the future, the Company cannot be certain that an adverse
outcome of one or more of these claims would not have a material
adverse effect on the Company's financial condition, results of
operations or cash flows.

MYR Group Inc. (MYR Group) is a holding company. The Company is a
specialty contractor serving the electrical infrastructure market
in the United States.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Quaker Chemical Subsidiary Had $3.3MM Liability
----------------------------------------------------------------
A subsidiary of Quaker Chemical Corporation projected its total
liability for claims alleging injury due to exposure to asbestos
to be $3,300,000, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with
the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year
ended December 31, 2012.

An inactive subsidiary of the Company that was acquired in 1978
sold certain products containing asbestos, primarily on an
installed basis, and is among the defendants in numerous lawsuits
alleging injury due to exposure to asbestos. The subsidiary
discontinued operations in 1991 and has no remaining assets other
than the proceeds from insurance settlements received.  To date,
the overwhelming majority of these claims have been disposed of
without payment and there have been no adverse judgments against
the subsidiary. Based on a continued analysis of the existing and
anticipated future claims against this subsidiary, it is currently
projected that the subsidiary's total liability over the next 50
years for these claims is approximately $3,300,000 (excluding
costs of defense). Although the Company has also been named as a
defendant in certain of these cases, no claims have been actively
pursued against the Company, and the Company has not contributed
to the defense or settlement of any of these cases pursued against
the subsidiary. These cases were handled by the subsidiary's
primary and excess insurers who had agreed in 1997 to pay all
defense costs and  be responsible for all damages assessed against
the subsidiary arising out of existing and future asbestos claims
up to the aggregate limits of the policies. A significant portion
of this primary insurance coverage was provided by an insurer that
is now insolvent, and the other primary insurers have asserted
that the aggregate limits of their policies have been exhausted.
The subsidiary challenged the applicability of these limits to the
claims being brought against the subsidiary. In response, two of
the three carriers entered into separate settlement and release
agreements with the subsidiary in late 2005 and early 2007 for
$15,000,000 and $20,000, 000 respectively.  The proceeds of both
settlements are restricted and can only be used to pay claims and
costs of defense associated with the subsidiary's asbestos
litigation. During the third quarter of 2007, the subsidiary and
the remaining primary insurance carrier entered into a Claim
Handling and Funding Agreement, under which the carrier will pay
27% of defense and indemnity costs incurred by or on behalf of the
subsidiary in connection with asbestos bodily injury claims for a
minimum of five years beginning July 1, 2007. The agreement
continues until terminated and can only be terminated by either
party by providing the other party with a minimum of two years
prior written notice.  As of December 31, 2012, no notice of
termination has been given under this agreement.  At the end of
the term of the agreement, the subsidiary may choose to again
pursue its claim against this insurer regarding the application of
the policy limits. The Company also believes that, if the coverage
issues under the primary policies with the remaining carrier are
resolved adversely to the subsidiary and all settlement proceeds
were used, the subsidiary may have limited additional coverage
from a state guarantee fund established following the insolvency
of one of the subsidiary's primary insurers. Nevertheless,
liabilities in respect of claims may exceed the assets and
coverage available to the subsidiary.

If the subsidiary's assets and insurance coverage were to be
exhausted, claimants of the subsidiary may actively pursue claims
against the Company because of the parent-subsidiary relationship.
Although asbestos litigation is particularly difficult to predict,
especially with respect to claims that are currently not being
actively pursued against the Company, the Company does not believe
that such claims would have merit or that the Company would be
held to have liability for any unsatisfied obligations of the
subsidiary as a result of such claims. After evaluating the nature
of the claims filed against the subsidiary and the small number of
such claims that have resulted in any payment, the potential
availability of additional insurance coverage at the subsidiary
level, the additional availability of the Company's own insurance
and the Company's strong defenses to claims that it should be held
responsible for the subsidiary's obligations because of the
parent-subsidiary relationship, the Company believes it is not
probable that the Company will incur any material losses. All of
the asbestos cases pursued against the Company challenging the
parent-subsidiary relationship are in the early stages of
litigation. The Company has been successful to date having claims
naming it dismissed during initial proceedings. Since the Company
may be in this early stage of litigation for some time, it is not
possible to estimate additional losses or range of loss, if any.

Quaker Chemical Corporation (Quaker) develops, produces and
markets a range of formulated chemical specialty products for
various heavy industrial and manufacturing applications and, in
addition, offers and markets chemical management services (CMS).


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Global Power Unit Continues to Defend Lawsuits
---------------------------------------------------------------
A former operating unit of Global Power Equipment Group Inc.
continues to defend itself from asbestos personal injury lawsuits,
according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "A former operating unit of Global Power has
been named as a defendant in a limited number of asbestos personal
injury lawsuits. Neither we nor our predecessors ever mined,
manufactured, produced or distributed asbestos fiber, the material
that allegedly caused the injury underlying these actions. The
bankruptcy court's discharge order issued upon emergence from
bankruptcy extinguished the claims made by all plaintiffs who had
filed asbestos claims against us before that time. We also believe
the bankruptcy court's discharge order should serve as a bar
against any later claim filed against us, including any of our
subsidiaries, based on alleged injury from asbestos at any time
before emergence from bankruptcy. In any event in all of the
asbestos cases finalized post-bankruptcy, we have been successful
in having such cases dismissed without liability. Moreover, during
2012, we secured insurance coverage that will help to reimburse
the defense costs and potential indemnity obligations of our
former operating unit relating to these claims. We intend to
vigorously defend all currently active actions, just as we
defended the other actions that have since been dismissed, all
without liability, and we do not anticipate that any of these
actions will have a material adverse effect on our financial
position, results of operations or liquidity. However, the
outcomes of any legal action cannot be predicted and, therefore,
there can be no assurance that this will be the case."

Global Power Equipment Group Inc. is a provider of power
generation equipment and maintenance services for customers in the
domestic and international energy, power infrastructure and
service industries.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Navistar Int'l. Continues to Defend Claims
-----------------------------------------------------------
Navistar International Corporation continues to defend itself
against an increased number of asbestos-related claims alleging
asbestos exposure from component parts found in older vehicles and
its facilities, according to the Company's Form 10-Q filing with
the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the quarterly
period ended January 31, 2013.

The Company states: "Along with other vehicle manufacturers, we
have been subject to an increased number of asbestos-related
claims in recent years. In general, these claims relate to
illnesses alleged to have resulted from asbestos exposure from
component parts found in older vehicles, although some cases
relate to the alleged presence of asbestos in our facilities. In
these claims, we are generally not the sole defendant, and the
claims name as defendants numerous manufacturers and suppliers of
a wide variety of products allegedly containing asbestos. We have
strongly disputed these claims, and it has been our policy to
defend against them vigorously. Historically, the actual damages
paid out to claimants have not been material in any year to our
financial condition, results of operations, or cash flows. It is
possible that the number of these claims will continue to grow,
and that the costs for resolving asbestos related claims could
become significant in the future."

Navistar International Corporation (NIC) is a holding company,
whose principal operating subsidiaries are Navistar, Inc. and
Navistar Financial Corporation (NFC). The Company is a
manufacturer of International brand commercial and military
trucks, IC Bus (IC) brand buses, MaxxForce brand diesel engines,
Workhorse Custom Chassis (WCC) brand chassis for motor homes and
step vans, and Monaco RV (Monaco) recreational vehicles (RV), as
well as a provider of service parts for all makes of trucks and
trailers.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: CenterPoint Energy Continues to Defend Lawsuits
----------------------------------------------------------------
CenterPoint Energy, Inc., continues to defend itself against
lawsuits filed by a number of individuals who claim injury due to
exposure to asbestos, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing
with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal
year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "Some facilities owned by our predecessors
contain or have contained asbestos insulation and other asbestos-
containing materials. We or our predecessor companies have been
named, along with numerous others, as a defendant in lawsuits
filed by a number of individuals who claim injury due to exposure
to asbestos. Some of the claimants have worked at locations owned
by us, but most existing claims relate to facilities previously
owned by our subsidiaries. We anticipate that additional claims
like those received may be asserted in the future.  Although their
ultimate outcome cannot be predicted at this time, we intend to
continue vigorously contesting claims that we do not consider to
have merit and do not expect, based on our experience to date,
these matters, either individually or in the aggregate, to have a
material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of
operations or cash flows."

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. is a public utility holding company whose
indirect wholly owned subsidiaries include CenterPoint Energy
Houston Electric, LLC (CenterPoint Houston), which engages in the
electric transmission and distribution business in a 5,000-square
mile area of the Texas Gulf Coast, which includes the city of
Houston, and CenterPoint Energy Resources Corp. (CERC Corp. and,
together with its subsidiaries, CERC), which owns and operates
natural gas distribution systems in six states.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Kaiser Ventures Has 7 Active PI Suits at Dec. 31
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Kaiser Ventures LLC had seven active lawsuits alleging bodily
injury as a result of asbestos exposure, according to the
Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

There are pending asbestos litigation claims, primarily bodily
injury, against Kaiser LLC and Kaiser Steel Corporation (the
bankruptcy estate of Kaiser Steel Corporation is embodied in KSC
Recovery, Inc.). There currently are approximately 7 active suits.
Many of the plaintiffs allege that they or their family members
were aboard Kaiser ships or worked in shipyards in the Oakland/San
Francisco, California area or Vancouver, Washington area in the
1940's and that the Company and/or KSC Recovery were in some
manner associated with one or more shipyards or has successor
liability. However, approximately half of the current claims
relate to other facilities such as the former Kaiser Steel Mill
Site Property.

Most of these lawsuits are third party premises claims alleging
injury resulting from exposure to asbestos or asbestos containing
products and involve multiple defendants. The Company anticipates
that it, often along with KSC Recovery, will be named as a
defendant in additional asbestos lawsuits. Additionally,
plaintiffs are seeking to add to the sites that the Company may
have historically had a connection with on behalf of the United
States. With a number of large manufacturers and/or installers of
asbestos and asbestos containing products filing for bankruptcy
over the past several years, the likelihood that additional suits
will be filed against the Company has increased. In addition, the
trend has been toward increasing trial damages and settlement
demands. Virtually all of the complaints against the Company and
KSC Recovery are non-specific, but involve allegations relating to
pre-bankruptcy activities. It is difficult to determine the amount
of damages that the Company could be liable for in any particular
case until near the time of trial; indeed, many of these cases do
not include pleadings with specific damages. The Company
vigorously defends all asbestos claims as is appropriate for a
particular case.

Of the claims resolved to date, more than approximately 60% have
been resolved without payment to the plaintiffs. However, there
was one significant asbestos claim that was settled in 2012 for
nearly $1.0 million. To date, substantially all defense costs and
any settlements have been paid by third-parties. The Company
believes that it currently has substantial insurance coverage for
the asbestos claims and has tendered these suits to appropriate
insurance carriers. However, one of the Company's main insurance
policies that covers asbestos claims expires on June 30, 2013.

Recycled from the former Kaiser Steel, Kaiser Ventures LLC
oversees recycling and solid waste investments.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: State Auto Had $1.4MM Reserves at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------
State Auto Financial Corporation had $1.4 million asbestos
reserves, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company stated that asbestos reserves are $1.4 million, and
environmental reserves are $7.0 million, for a total of $8.4
million, or 0.9% of net losses and loss expenses payable.  The
company added that asbestos reserves increased $0.2 million and
environmental reserves decreased $0.8 million from 2011.

State Auto Financial Corporation is an Ohio domiciled property and
casualty insurance holding company incorporated in 1990. It is
engaged in writing personal, business and specialty insurance.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Standard Motor Had 2,140 PI Cases as of Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
Approximately 2,140 asbestos cases arising from products sold by
Standard Motor Products, Inc.'s former brake business are pending,
according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "We may be materially adversely affected by
asbestos claims arising from products sold by our former brake
business, as well as by other product liability claims.

"In 1986, we acquired a brake business, which we subsequently sold
in March 1998. When we originally acquired this brake business, we
assumed future liabilities relating to any alleged exposure to
asbestos-containing products manufactured by the seller of the
acquired brake business. In accordance with the related purchase
agreement, we agreed to assume the liabilities for all new claims
filed after September 2001. Our ultimate exposure will depend upon
the number of claims filed against us on or after September 2001
and the amounts paid for indemnity and defense of such claims.

"Actuarial consultants with experience in assessing asbestos-
related liabilities conducted a study to estimate our potential
claim liability as of August 31, 2012. The updated study has
estimated an undiscounted liability for settlement payments,
excluding legal costs and any potential recovery from insurance
carriers, ranging from $27.1 million to $41.5 million for the
period through 2058. The change from the prior year study was a
$0.4 million decrease for the low end of the range and a $25
million decrease for the high end of the range.  The decrease in
the estimated undiscounted liability from the prior year study at
both the low end and high end of the range reflects our actual
experience over the past twelve months. Based on the information
contained in the actuarial study and all other available
information considered by us, we concluded that no amount within
the range of settlement payments was more likely than any other
and, therefore, recorded the low end of the range as the liability
associated with future settlement payments through 2058 in our
consolidated financial statements.  Accordingly, an incremental
$0.4 million provision in our discontinued operation was added to
the asbestos accrual in September 2012 increasing the reserve to
approximately $27.1 million. According to the updated study, legal
costs, which are expensed as incurred and reported in earnings
(loss) from discontinued operation in the accompanying statement
of operations, are estimated to range from $32.3 million to $57
million during the same period.

"At December 31, 2012, approximately 2,140 cases were outstanding
for which we may be responsible for any related liabilities.
Since inception in September 2001 through December 31, 2012, the
amounts paid for settled claims are approximately $13.4 million. A
substantial increase in the number of new claims or increased
settlement payments or awards of damages could have a material
adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of
operations.

"Given the uncertainties associated with projecting asbestos-
related matters into the future and other factors outside our
control, we cannot give any assurance that significant increases
in the number of claims filed against us will not occur, that
asbestos-related damages or settlement awards will not exceed the
amount we have in reserve, or that additional provisions will not
be required. Management will continue to monitor the circumstances
surrounding these potential liabilities in determining whether
additional reserves and provisions may be necessary. We plan on
performing a similar annual actuarial analysis during the third
quarter of each year for the foreseeable future.

Standard Motor Products, Inc. (Standard Motor Products) is an
independent manufacturer and distributor of replacement parts for
motor vehicles in the automotive aftermarket industry, with a
focus on the original equipment service market.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: International Shipholding Had $650,000 Reserves
----------------------------------------------------------------
International Shipholding Corporation had approximately $650,000
reserves for lawsuits claiming damages related to occupational
diseases, primarily related to asbestos and hearing loss,
according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "We have been named as a defendant in numerous
lawsuits claiming damages related to occupational diseases,
primarily related to asbestos and hearing loss.  We believe that
most of these claims are without merit, and that insurance and the
indemnification of a previous owner of one of our subsidiaries may
mitigate our exposure.  Based on consultation with outside legal
counsel, we have estimated our current overall exposure to the
lawsuits in question, after considering insurance coverage for
these claims, to be approximately $650,000.  We believe those
estimates are reasonable and have established reserves
accordingly. Our reserves for these lawsuits as of December 31,
2012 and 2011 were approximately $650,000 and $256,000,
respectively.  There is a reasonable possibility that there will
be additional claims associated with occupational diseases
asserted against us. However, we do not believe that it is
reasonably possible that our exposure from those claims will be
material because (1) the lawsuits filed since 1989 claiming
damages related to occupational diseases in which we have been
named as a defendant have primarily involved seamen that served
on-board our vessels and the number of such persons still eligible
to file a lawsuit against us is diminishing and (2) we believe
such potential additional claims, if pursued, would be covered
under either or both of (i) an indemnification agreement with a
previous owner of one of our subsidiaries or (ii) one or more of
our existing insurance policies with deductibles ranging from
$1,500 to $25,000 per claim."

International Shipholding Corporation, through its subsidiaries,
operates a diversified fleet of United States and international
flag vessels that provide international and domestic maritime
transportation services to commercial and governmental customers
primarily under medium to long-term time charters or contracts of
affreightment.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: EMC Insurance Had 2,235 Claims at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------
EMC Insurance Group, Inc., has exposure to approximately 2,235
asbestos bodily injury claims, according to the Company's Form 10-
K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the
fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company has exposure to asbestos and environmental related
claims associated with the insurance business written by the
parties to the pooling agreement and the reinsurance business
assumed from Employers Mutual by the reinsurance subsidiary.
These exposures are not considered to be significant.  Asbestos
and environmental losses paid by the Company have averaged
$1,637,002 per year over the past five years.  Reserves for
asbestos and environmental related claims for direct insurance and
assumed reinsurance business totaled $9,432,926 and $7,671,611
($8,777,876 and $6,933,138 net of reinsurance) at December 31,
2012 and 2011, respectively.

At present, the pool participants are defending approximately
1,600 asbestos bodily injury lawsuits, some of which involve
multiple plaintiffs.  Six former policyholders and one current
policyholder dominate the pool participants' asbestos claims.
Most of the lawsuits are subject to express reservation of rights
based upon the lack of an injury within the applicable policy
periods because many asbestos lawsuits do not specifically allege
dates of asbestos exposure or dates of injury.  During 2003, the
pool participants were presented with several hundred plaintiff
lawsuits (primarily multi-plaintiff lawsuits) filed against three
former policyholders representing approximately 66,500 claimants
related to exposure to asbestos or products containing asbestos.
These claims are based upon nonspecific asbestos exposure and
nonspecific injuries.  As a result, management did not establish a
significant amount of case loss reserves for these claims.
Several of the multi-plaintiff lawsuits (including the vast
majority of those associated with one former policyholder) were
dismissed.  As of December 31, 2012, approximately 2,235 of the
claims remain open.  During 2006, the pool participants received
notice that another former policyholder was a named defendant in
approximately 33,000 claims nationwide.  The last of these claims
were settled during 2012 for approximately $690,000 (the Company's
share).

Prior to 2008, actual losses paid for asbestos-related claims had
been minimal due to the plaintiffs' failure to identify an
exposure to any asbestos-containing product associated with the
pool participants' current and former policyholders.  However,
paid losses and settlement expenses have increased significantly
since 2008 as a result of claims attributed to two former
policyholders.  One of these former policyholders, a broker of
various products, including asbestos, settled a claim for
approximately $450,000 (the Company's share) in 2008.  At December
31, 2012, 11 additional claims associated with this former
policyholder remain open, though similar exposure on these claims
is not anticipated.  The other former policyholder, a furnace
manufacturer, had multiple claims settle for a total of
approximately $1,296,000 (the Company's share) during the period
2009 through 2012.  The asbestos exposure associated with this
former policyholder has increased in recent years, and this trend
may possibly continue into the future with increased per plaintiff
settlements.  Approximately 490 asbestos exposure claims
associated with this former policyholder remain open.

IBNR loss reserves have been established to cover estimated
ultimate losses.  The asbestos IBNR reserves were increased in
each of the last five years based on examinations of the implied
three-year survival ratio (ratio of loss and settlement expense
reserves to the three-year average of loss and settlement expense
payments), which has deteriorated due to an increase in both paid
losses and paid settlement expenses.  Settlement expense payments
have increased significantly since 2008 and have been the primary
driver behind recently implemented reserve increases.  The primary
cause of this increase in paid settlement expenses is the
retention of a national coordinating counsel in 2008 for a
policyholder having exposure in numerous jurisdictions.  The
national coordinating counsel has provided, and continues to
provide, significant services in the areas of document review,
discovery, deposition and trial preparation.  Environmental IBNR
reserves are established in consideration of the implied three-
year survival ratio.

Estimating loss and settlement expense reserves for asbestos and
environmental claims is very difficult due to the many
uncertainties surrounding these types of claims.  These
uncertainties exist because the assignment of responsibility
varies widely by state and claims often emerge long after a policy
has expired, which makes assignment of damages to the appropriate
party and to the time period covered by a particular policy
difficult.  In establishing reserves for these types of claims,
management monitors the relevant facts concerning each claim, the
current status of the legal environment, social and political
conditions, and claim history and trends within the Company and
the industry.

A copy of the Company's regulatory filing is available at:

                     http://is.gd/5U2rwq

EMC Insurance Group Inc., is an insurance holding company. The
Company conducts operations in property and casualty insurance,
and reinsurance through its subsidiaries.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: NL Industries Continues to Defend 1,125 Cases
--------------------------------------------------------------
NL Industries, Inc., continues to defend itself against 1,125
cases alleging personal injuries as a result of occupational
exposure to product containing asbestos, silica and mixed dust,
according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "We have been named as a defendant in various
lawsuits in several jurisdictions, alleging personal injuries as a
result of occupational exposure primarily to products manufactured
by our former operations containing asbestos, silica and/or mixed
dust. In addition, some plaintiffs allege exposure to asbestos
from working in various facilities previously owned and/or
operated by us. There are 1,125 of these types of cases pending,
involving a total of approximately 1,945 plaintiffs. In addition,
the claims of approximately 8,125 plaintiffs have been
administratively dismissed or placed on the inactive docket in
Ohio, Indiana and Texas state courts. We do not expect these
claims will be re-opened unless the plaintiffs meet the courts'
medical criteria for asbestos-related claims. We have not accrued
any amounts for this litigation because of the uncertainty of
liability and inability to reasonably estimate the liability, if
any. To date, we have not been adjudicated liable in any of these
matters. Based on information available to us, including:

* facts concerning historical operations,
* the rate of new claims,
* the number of claims from which we have been dismissed and
* our prior experience in the defense of these matters.

"We believe that the range of reasonably possible outcomes of
these matters will be consistent with our historical costs (which
are not material). Furthermore, we do not expect any reasonably
possible outcome would involve amounts material to our
consolidated financial position, results of operations or
liquidity. We have sought and will continue to vigorously seek,
dismissal and/or a finding of no liability from each claim. In
addition, from time to time, we have received notices regarding
asbestos or silica claims purporting to be brought against former
subsidiaries, including notices provided to insurers with which we
have entered into settlements extinguishing certain insurance
policies. These insurers may seek indemnification from us."

NL Industries, Inc., (NL) is a holding company. The Company
operates in the component products industry through its majority-
owned subsidiary, CompX International Inc.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Independence Realty Has Contaminated Buildings
---------------------------------------------------------------
Independence Realty Trust, Inc., disclosed that it owns properties
with asbestos-containing materials, according to the Company's
Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "Limited quantities of asbestos-containing
materials are present in various building materials such as floor
coverings, ceiling texture material, acoustical tiles and
decorative treatment. Environmental laws govern the presence,
maintenance and removal of asbestos. These laws could be used to
impose liability for release of, and exposure to, hazardous
substances, including asbestos-containing materials, into the air.
Such laws require that owners or operators of buildings containing
asbestos (i) properly manage and maintain the asbestos, (ii)
notify and train those who may come into contact with asbestos and
(iii) undertake special precautions, including removal or other
abatement, if asbestos would be disturbed during renovation or
demolition of a building. These laws may allow third parties to
seek recovery from owners or operators of real properties for
personal injury associated with exposure to asbestos fibers. As
the owner of our properties, we may be liable for any such costs.

"Compliance with new or more stringent laws or regulations or
stricter interpretation of existing laws may require material
expenditures by us. We cannot assure stockholders that future
laws, ordinances or regulations will not impose any material
environmental liability, or that the current environmental
condition of our properties will not be affected by the operations
of residents, existing conditions of the land, operations in the
vicinity of the properties, or the activities of unrelated third
parties. In addition, there are various local, state and federal
fire, health, life-safety and similar regulations that we may be
required to comply with. Failure to comply with applicable laws
and regulations could result in fines and/or damages, suspension
of personnel of our advisor and/or other sanctions."

Independence Realty Trust, Inc., was formed on March 26, 2009 as a
Maryland corporation that has elected to be taxed as a real estate
investment trust, or REIT, commencing with the taxable year ended
December 31, 2011.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: CenterPoint Houston Continues to Defend PI Suits
-----------------------------------------------------------------
CenterPoint Energy Houston Electric, LLC, continues to defend
itself against lawsuits alleging injury due to exposure to
asbestos, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

Some facilities owned by CenterPoint Energy contain or have
contained asbestos insulation and other asbestos-containing
materials. CenterPoint Energy or its subsidiaries, including
CenterPoint Houston, have been named, along with numerous others,
as a defendant in lawsuits filed by a number of individuals who
claim injury due to exposure to asbestos. Some of the claimants
have worked at locations owned by CenterPoint Energy or
CenterPoint Houston, but most existing claims relate to facilities
previously owned by CenterPoint Energy's other subsidiaries or
CenterPoint Houston, but currently owned by NRG Texas LP.
CenterPoint Energy anticipates that additional claims like those
received may be asserted in the future. In 2004 and early 2005,
CenterPoint Energy sold its generating business, to which most of
these claims relate, to a company which is now an affiliate of
NRG. Under the terms of the arrangements regarding separation of
the generating business from CenterPoint Energy and its sale of
that business, ultimate financial responsibility for uninsured
losses from claims relating to the generating business has been
assumed by the NRG affiliate, but CenterPoint Energy has agreed to
continue to defend such claims to the extent they are covered by
insurance maintained by CenterPoint Energy, subject to
reimbursement of the costs of such defense by the NRG affiliate.
Although their ultimate outcome cannot be predicted at this time,
CenterPoint Houston or CenterPoint Energy, as appropriate, intends
to continue vigorously contesting claims that are not considered
to have merit and, based on its experience to date, CenterPoint
Houston does not expect these matters, either individually or in
the aggregate, to have a material adverse effect on its financial
condition, results of operations or cash flows.

CenterPoint Energy Houston Electric, a subsidiary of utility
holding company CenterPoint Energy, serves across the fourth-
largest US city and surrounding areas of the Texas Gulf Coast. The
utility operates the regulated power transmission and distribution
systems in the Houston metropolitan area.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: IntriCon Corp. Continues to Defend PI Suits
------------------------------------------------------------
IntriCon Corporation continues to defend itself in lawsuits
alleging asbestos-related diseases, according to the Company's
Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company is a defendant along with a number of other parties in
lawsuits alleging that plaintiffs have or may have contracted
asbestos-related diseases as a result of exposure to asbestos
products or equipment containing asbestos sold by one or more
named defendants. These lawsuits relate to the discontinued heat
technologies segment which was sold in March 2005. Due to the non-
informative nature of the complaints, the Company does not know
whether any of the complaints state valid claims against the
Company. Certain insurance carriers have informed the Company that
the primary policies for the period August 1, 1970-1978 have been
exhausted and that the carriers will no longer provide defense and
insurance coverage under those policies. However, the Company has
other primary and excess insurance policies that the Company
believes afford coverage for later years. Some of these other
primary insurers have accepted defense and insurance coverage for
these suits, and some of them have either ignored the Company's
tender of defense of these cases, or have denied coverage, or have
accepted the tenders but asserted a reservation of rights and/or
advised the Company that they need to investigate further. Because
settlement payments are applied to all years a litigant was deemed
to have been exposed to asbestos, the Company believes that it
will have funds available for defense and insurance coverage under
the non-exhausted primary and excess insurance policies. However,
unlike the older policies, the more recent policies have
deductible amounts for defense and settlements costs that the
Company will be required to pay; accordingly, the Company expects
that its litigation costs will increase in the future. Further,
many of the policies covering later years (approximately 1984 and
thereafter) have exclusions for any asbestos products or
operations, and thus do not provide insurance coverage for
asbestos-related lawsuits. The Company does not believe that the
asserted exhaustion of some of the primary insurance coverage for
the 1970-1978 period will have a material adverse effect on its
financial condition, liquidity, or results of operations.
Management believes that the number of insurance carriers involved
in the defense of the suits, and the significant number of policy
years and policy limits under which these insurance carriers are
insuring the Company, make the ultimate disposition of these
lawsuits not material to the Company's consolidated financial
position or results of operations.

IntriCon Corporation (IntriCon) is an international company
engaged in designing, developing, engineering and manufacturing
body-worn devices. IntriCon serves the body-worn device market by
designing, developing, engineering and manufacturing micro-
miniature products, microelectronics, micro-mechanical assemblies
and complete assemblies, primarily for bio-telemetry devices,
hearing instruments and professional audio communication devices.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: John Crane, et al. Settle Meso Case Before Trial
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Christina Stueve Hodges reports that hours before opening
arguments were set to begin in a Bolingbrook, Ill., man's Madison
County asbestos trial, attorneys settled.  The case was being
litigated in Associate Judge Clarence Harrison's courtroom.

Arguments were to begin Friday, March 15 at 9 a.m.  Harrison said
he received an email that the case had resolved between 1:30-2
a.m. Friday.

"Once you're at trial, you're at trial," Harrison said.  "You
don't stop working."

According to the complaint, plaintiff George Hamblet first learned
he had developed mesothelioma, an asbestos-induced disease, on
April 2, 2012.

Attorneys Randy Gori and Erin Beavers of Gori Julian & Associates
in Edwardsville, Aaron Heckman and Fletcher Trammel of Bailey
Perrin Bailey in Houston, Texas filed the case for Hamblet last
June.

Jury selection started at 1 p.m. Wednesday, March 13 and continued
all day Thursday, March 14.

Hamblett and his wife, Doris, remained seated in the jury box as
the jury was selected for the case against John Crane and Crane
Company.

The suit originally sought damages from more than 50 other
defendants, but only John Crane and Crane Company remained as
defendants at trial.

Harrison said he was not aware of the details of the settlement.

"They just report that the parties have resolved all remaining
issues," he said.

According to the suit, Hamblet was a laborer from 1961-1963 at the
Owens Illinois Plastics Plant in Chicago; as a fireman in the U.S.
Navy from 1963-1967 in Illinois, Virginia, Rhode Island, and
Massachusetts and aboard the USS Damato and USS Joseph P. Kennedy;
as a laborer at the Argo Corn Refining Plant in Bedford Park,
Ill., in 1968; as a laborer and fork lift operator at Continental
Can Company in Chicago, 1968-1978; and as a shade tree mechanic in
the state of Illinois from 1960-1979.

During the course of employment, he claims he was exposed to and
inhaled, ingested or otherwise absorbed large amounts of asbestos
fibers emanating from certain products he was working with and
around, which were manufactured, sold, distributed or installed by
the defendants.

Nicole Behnen -- nbehnen@polsinelli.com -- and Leo Chmielewski --
lchmielewski@polsinelli.com -- and Dennis Dobbels --
ddobbels@polsinelli.com --, Brandy Harty -- bharty@polsinelli.com
-- and Allison Sonneveld -- asonneveld@polsinelli.com -- of
Polsinelli Shughart represent the defense.

Ed Burns represented John Crane.

Madison County case number 12-L-821.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Contractor Pleads Guilty to 3 Health Violations
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Construction Index (UK) reports that a contractor in Northern
Ireland has been fined for disturbing asbestos during the
demolition of a bungalow in Dromore.

Michael Galloway, trading as MG Construction, was fined GBP2,500
and also given a 12 month conditional discharge after pleading
guilty at Newry Crown Court to three breaches of health and safety
legislation.

The case arose when materials containing asbestos were disturbed,
spread and removed during the demolition of a bungalow at a site
at 22 Lough Road, Dromore, Co. Down between Sept. 22, 2010 and
Oct. 7, 2010.

The investigation by the Health & Safety Executive Northern
Ireland (HSENI) found that Mr. Galloway removed asbestos
insulation board without the necessary license.  Mr. Galloway had
previously taken two samples from the bungalow, which were
analyzed and found to be grey insulation board containing amosite
and chrysotile asbestos.

The investigation also found that Mr. Galloway did not take
adequate steps to prevent both exposure to and the spread of
asbestos fibers by allowing workers to carry out demolition work
in areas that were contaminated with asbestos debris.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Euro MP's Abatement Plan Initiative Gets Support
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Mark Mckay for The Burton Mail (UK) reports that the Euro MP for
Swadlincote and Ashby has welcomed an initiative calling for the
removal of asbestos from public buildings.

A recent report seen in the European Parliament has called for
asbestos to be removed from all public buildings and buildings
requiring public access, by 2028.

Glenis Willmott, Labour MEP for the East Midlands, welcomed the
move, but criticized UKIP MEPs who voted against the measure.

She said: "Around 4,000 people die every year in the UK due to
asbestos related illnesses, making it the county's single greatest
cause of work-related death.

"It's not a pro or anti Europe issue, it's about people dying from
asbestos-related diseases."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cwmcarn High School Leaders Hit on Expert
----------------------------------------------------------
Gwemt News' Natalie Crockett reports that the governors and head
teacher of a Valleys schools closed over asbestos concerns say an
independent expert employed to advise the council cannot be
impartial -- a claim the expert denies.

The leadership of Cwmcarn High School claim Professor Robin Howie,
who the Caerphilly council has employed to advise them on three
separate asbestos surveys, cannot be considered independent
because he has already made comments to the media about the
school's situation.

But Mr. Howie refutes their claims, saying his report is based on
scientific fact.

In a joint statement with head Jacqui Peplinski, the governors say
Prof Howie is a well-known asbestos campaigner and his published
opinions on the acceptable levels of airborne asbestos levels go
beyond the advice of the Health and Safety Executive.

They believe he is likely to suggest the school remains closed,
despite two of the three surveys saying the risk is much lower
than first thought.

Chairman of governors, Gary Thomas, said: "He (Prof Howie) is
neither impartial nor independent.

"It's like putting a fox in charge of the chickens and telling him
not to take the chickens.

"If the council had taken a second opinion from the Health and
Safety Executive back in October it would not have been closed.
It's an absolute mess -- it's dreadful."

Mr. Howie responded, saying: "I would refute the governor's
comment but I will accept that I don't always agree with the way
the Health and Safety Executive interprets its own reports.

"Scientifically I regard myself as impartial."

The governors' comments came after Caerphilly's cabinet member for
education, Cllr Rhianon Passmore, said allowing pupils and
teachers to return to the school in its condition would breach its
duty of care and would expose them to a health risk.

She said there was a significant amount of asbestos debris in the
ceiling and roof voids, as well as the heater cabinets and accused
the governing body of delaying progress at the school when they
banned council workers from the site in December.

The governors dismissed this and said they do not have the keys to
the site.

They say the original Santia report, called for by the council,
overstated the potential health and safety risk resulting in the
"unnecessary and inappropriate" closure of the school.

They reiterate this was highlighted in two subsequent reports by
the Health and Safety Laboratory and Ensafe and say the risk is
much lower.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Detected at The Williams County Courthouse
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Marci Hummel of The Bryan Times Business News reports that a small
section of ceiling and floor tile on the fourth floor of the
Williams County Courthouse contains asbestos, but at this time it
is not considered a danger to courthouse employees or the public.

On Thursday, March 14, the Williams County Commissioners talked
with the county elected officials to make them aware a contractor
discovered the asbestos.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: BOHS/HSE Launch 2013 Series Of Fibro Roadshow
--------------------------------------------------------------
The British Occupational Hygiene Society (BOHS), in conjunction
with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), will be running their
key series of asbestos roadshow events in June 2013, to reflect a
number of important changes and developments in the industry.

The roadshows are important for anyone who wants to find out about
and discuss the latest developments in the control of exposure to
asbestos.  The events will benefit those companies who work with
asbestos as well as those who advise on control.

The presentations will start off in Glasgow on June 4, moving on
to Manchester, Birmingham and London, and concluding on June 12 in
Cardiff.  An exhibition will run alongside the presentations,
featuring leading organizations showcasing the latest asbestos-
related products and services.

Key areas of focus during the roadshows will be the latest
developments in the control of risks from asbestos in the
workplace, with new HSE guidance a major current change.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Mishandling and Unsafe Disposal in Prisons
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Attorneys at Cooney Conway Report that as is the case with many
older buildings, prisons may contain some amount of asbestos,
often found in walls or flooring.  In Kansas, multiple
correctional facilities have initiated asbestos abatement, or
removal, programs in the past several years.

In one example, the abatement occurred after The Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA) found that an asbestos-contaminated prison
facility in Topeka violated the Clean Air Act and Toxic Substances
Control Act during renovation work.  Specifically, prisoners and
prison employees were involved in breaking down flooring at the
facility, which may have contained asbestos.

It is not uncommon for inmates to perform work within prisons
while they are incarcerated, which makes it important to take
proper precautions to protect both prisoners and prison staff.
Over the years, there have been cases in which prisoners have
developed mesothelioma or lung cancer as a result of being exposed
to asbestos while performing work in prison, or even from being
exposed to crumbling asbestos in some areas of prisons.

Complaints surfaced citing that asbestos had been mishandled and
disposed of in non-compliant, unsafe ways in the facility which
accommodated 500 offenders and was staffed by 200-plus employees.
In addition, asbestos inspections had not been made prior to
renovation, which violates regulations set forth in the Clean Air
Act.  A notice of noncompliance was served on the corrections
department after it failed to take these necessary precautions to
minimize asbestos exposure.

The EPA found that further safety measures should have been
followed, including equipping renovation workers with respiratory
protective devices, providing adequate training on asbestos
removal and handling in advance of the renovation, and overseeing
the labor to ensure safety.

As a result of the EPA's findings, outside contractors were hired
by the Kansas Department of Corrections to examine more than half
a dozen state prisons for asbestos before any additional
renovations could take place.  The goal was to ensure that any
future work would follow the rules set forth in the Clean Air Act
to protect people from the dangers of asbestos and mesothelioma
causes.

During this inspection, asbestos was found in areas including pipe
insulation, ceiling materials, walls and floor tiles.  Glue
containing asbestos was even found on the floor of two inmate
dormitory rooms.  Asbestos was also found in various rooms in the
prisons that were tested, from chaplains' offices to libraries to
staff lounges.

If you or a loved one has been exposed to asbestos and would like
to learn more about your legal rights, an asbestos attorney may be
able to provide answers to your important questions.  The asbestos
attorneys at Cooney Conway can provide you with a free
consultation to discuss the legal merits of your case.

Cooney & Conway, based in Chicago, Ill., is a nationwide
mesothelioma law firm with 19 leading mesothelioma lawyers,
skilled asbestos attorneys and supported by a staff of more than
80 members.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Abatement of The Columbian in Lancaster Underway
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Carl Burnett, Jr., The Lancaster Eagle-Gazette reports that when
the city bought the Columbian building to renovate it into a new
municipal court building, contractors found some asbestos in the
building that needs to be removed before any other work can begin.

The removal process begins March 18.

A contract was finalized Friday, March 15, with Ohio Technical
Services, Inc., of Columbus, to do the work, said Lancaster city
service/safety director Mike Courtney.  The contract is for
$12,200.

"It's pretty exciting to start seeing work begin on the building,"
Courtney said.  The work is expected to take about four days to
complete.

While abatement of the asbestos is under way, design firms
interested in converting the 1894 building into a modern,
functioning courthouse have until March 27 to submit their
qualifications applications.  Potential firms were allowed to look
at the building, at 134 and 140 W. Main St.

"We've got a lot of interest in the building project," Courtney
said.  "About 25 have called expressing an interest and we've had
around 15 firms who wanted to look at the building."

The design firm will come up with plans to convert the building
into a municipal court while maintaining the building's historical
integrity.  A committee that includes city and municipal court
representatives will go through the applications of the firms that
apply by the deadline and settle on the top three based on their
qualifications alone.

"Then the team will pick the best one and begin to negotiate a
contract for the work," Courtney said.  "If we can't agree on the
cost, we go to the second one on the list and so on until we reach
a contract with one of the firms."

Courtney said the city hopes to choose a designer by April, with
construction contracts ready for bids in June.

The city bought the Columbian in May 2012 for $410,246 from
Investment Land Holdings and Downtown Lancaster Enterprises.

In September, the architectural firm Brandstetter Carroll, of
Cincinnati, was chosen to oversee the overall renovation of the
building as the criteria architect.

The estimated $6.7 million project for the municipal court is
being funded by a $10 fee the Fairfield County Municipal Court
adds to all cases going through the court.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Residents Await Churchill St. Rubble Disposal
--------------------------------------------------------------
Averyll Loft of The Fraser Coast Chronicle reports that samples
have been taken from the site of a house fire in Maryborough after
neighboring residents raised concerns of asbestos poisoning.

The group of Churchill St. homeowners contacted the Fraser Coast
Regional Council last week requesting the charred remains of No.
32 were cleared immediately to "prevent further health risks".

Mayor Gerard O'Connell said the council and Queensland Health had
inspected the site, but the clean-up and containment of asbestos
was the responsibility of the landowner.

"Queensland Health is the lead agency and will test samples from
the site to determine if asbestos is present," he said.

If present, the landowner will have to follow strict guidelines
during the clean-up.

"Because it is private property council does not have the
authority to enter the site to clean up, but will urge the
property owner to take remedial action," Mr. O'Connell said.

The house at 32 Churchill St. burnt down in the early hours of
Feb. 25.

Police allege four men pelted the house with fire bombs and set
fire to a mattress inside, which ultimately engulfed the house in
flames.  The rubble has remained on site.  It has been a great
source of concern to neighbors ever since.

A spokeswoman for the Churchill St. residents, who did not want to
be named, said they believed asbestos was in a dangerous powdery
form.

"With the current high winds, these minuscule particles are
airborne, much to the detriment and respiratory health of the
residents," she said.

According to Asbestos Wise, while asbestos-related diseases are
generally associated with inhaling asbestos over a long period.

However, some people may develop mesothelioma after brief
exposure.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: CCTV Footage of Wattle Lane Fibro Dumping Airs
---------------------------------------------------------------
Ninemsn.com.au reports that The City of Sydney council is
appealing for help from the public to find a truck driver who
dumped more than two tons of asbestos outside two preschool
childcare centers last year.

The asbestos sheeting was found on Wattle Lane, Ultimo on Dec. 14.

Two childcare centers, the KU Wattle Lane Children's Centre and
the Magic Pudding, were located two meters from the street.

The dumping spot was about two blocks from the city's waste
management depot.

The City of Sydney council will release CCTV camera footage on
Tuesday, March 19, showing a truck travelling along Wattle Lane.

A council spokesman said the vision showed the truck with its
tipping tray up and the rear tray gate swinging open, spilling
tons of asbestos into the roadway as it passes over two speed
bumps installed to protect preschool children.

He said the council had been unable to identify the driver and
would release the footage in the hope that someone may recognize
the truck.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Study Links Mineral Wool, Silica To Mesothelioma
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Surviving Mesothelioma and Cancer Monthly reports that asbestos is
a fibrous mineral mined and used for decades in products ranging
from insulation to cement, floor and ceiling tiles, adhesives, and
friction products.  It has been more than forty years since
scientists confirmed the link between asbestos and malignant
pleural mesothelioma, an aggressive cancer of the lining around
the lungs and its use is now heavily regulated in the U.S.  In
recent years, another mineral called erionite, has also been
implicated in mesothelioma cases.

Now, a study conducted in France suggests that types of mineral
particles used in industry may increase the risk of mesothelioma,
particularly in people who are also exposed to asbestos.
Researchers in Bordeaux, France compared the cases of 1,199 male
industrial workers with mesothelioma with 2,370 healthy industrial
workers, paying close attention to each worker's level of exposure
to asbestos, mineral wool and silica.

Mineral wool is a fibrous material made by combining slag, granite
and other materials at high temperature.  Like asbestos, mineral
wool has high tensile strength and is resistant to fire, rot and
moisture.  It is used in many of the same industrial applications
as asbestos.  Silica is a crystalline compound abundant in the
earth's crust and used in the manufacture of glass and ceramics
and as an additive to abrasives.  It occurs in several forms, the
most common of which is quartz.

According to the French study published in the American Journal of
Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, complete job histories
were collected for each study subject and their exposure to
asbestos, mineral wool, and silica were assessed using three
different French job exposure matrices.  Adjustments were made for
each person's age, birth date and occupational asbestos exposure.

The news was not good for industrial workers.  Researchers found
"a significant association between mesothelioma and mineral wool
exposure", even after adjusting for occupational asbestos
exposure.  As with asbestos, the greater the exposure to mineral
wool, the higher the risk for mesothelioma.  Just as disturbing,
for study subjects exposed to both asbestos and mineral wool and,
to a lesser degree, for study subjects exposed to both asbestos
and silica, the risk of mesothelioma was higher than for those
exposed to asbestos alone.

Our results are in favor of an increased risk of pleural
mesothelioma for subjects exposed to both asbestos and mineral
wool or asbestos and silica," concludes the report.  Asbestos is
believed to trigger mesothelioma by causing chronic irritation and
inflammation.  Inhalation of other irritating particles may
compound the effect.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: C$488MM Cleanup Plan for Giant Mine Proposed
-------------------------------------------------------------
Bob Weber of The Canadian Press reports that federal officials are
scrambling to clean up a crumbling, abandoned northern gold mine
that is in imminent danger of releasing massive amounts of
arsenic, asbestos and other toxins.

"It's pretty scary stuff," said Mark Palmer, senior adviser on
Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development's Giant Mine Project,
which describes a proposed cleanup of collapsing, poison-filled
buildings and caverns on the shore of Great Slave Lake as an
emergency response.

"We are worried they are going to fall down and if that happens
there will be a release."

The Giant Mine just outside Yellowknife was an economic mainstay
for 50 years.  But its gold was locked within crystals of
arsenopyrite, and after the mine finally closed in 2004, about
237,000 tons of highly toxic, water-soluble arsenic trioxide
remained on the site.

Most of the arsenic was blown back underground, where huge
dustpiles of it sit in 15 subterranean chambers, some big enough
to swallow an 11-storey building.  About 3,600 cubic meters of
arsenic and arsenic-contaminated material remain in surface
structures -- uncontained and, in many cases, exposed to the
elements.

A $488-million plan to clean up the site and freeze the
underground arsenic in place -- Canada's biggest environmental
cleanup -- is before northern environmental regulators.  But
engineering reports say the buildings and some of the underground
caverns have deteriorated so badly that the cleanup must begin as
soon as possible to contain various poisons, which also include
mercury, cyanide and PCBs.

"Many of the underground elements are showing signs of failure,
including the formation of a sinkhole at the surface," says the
department's application for the emergency cleanup.

"There is the potential for significant impacts to the environment
and injury to humans through falling cladding, partial building
collapse and arsenic and asbestos exposure to humans and
wildlife."

Arsenic poisoning starts with headaches, confusion, severe
diarrhea and drowsiness.  When the poisoning becomes acute,
symptoms may include diarrhea, vomiting, blood in the urine,
cramping muscles, hair loss, stomach pain and more convulsions.

Continued poisoning leads to a coma followed by death.

Photographs from the site show piles of arsenic dust lying exposed
inside the old flues that used to carry it underground.  Those
flues are pulling away from the building they were attached to and
slowly collapsing as concrete and wood pillars that held them up
rot away.

Snow blows freely through derelict walls and roofs onto arsenic-
contaminated equipment.  Asbestos insulation waves in the wind as
it flakes off old pipes and buildings.

Underground, arsenic-stuffed caverns are in danger of falling in
from the surface or collapsing into mined-out areas below.  The
mine's main smokestack is crumbling.

Palmer said the work needs to start this summer before the poison
starts escaping.

"We're saying it could happen.  It's got to be an unacceptable
risk.

"Our main goal is the health and safety of northerners and the
people on the site."

He said he hopes regulatory approvals will be in place by June.

The cleanup would be dicey.  The worst-contaminated surface
building, where arsenic and gold were separated, would have to be
sealed off as it was taken apart.  Workers would have to wear full
hazmat suits and breathe supplied air.

As much of the arsenic as possible would have to be cleaned up and
sent underground.  Solid waste from buildings would be removed and
stored until full remediation began.

Palmer estimates an emergency cleanup would take two summers, by
which time a full cleanup plan would likely be through the
regulatory process.  He was unable to supply a cost estimate, as
the project is just going out for bids.

Whatever the cost, it would be borne by taxpayers.  Giant was
built before northern miners were required to post environmental
cleanup bonds -- in fact, the mess left at Giant is one of the
reasons such legislation was drafted.

The cost of addressing Giant's imminent toxic threat is just the
latest addition to the mine's bitter legacy.

Although it once provided a livelihood to generations of
Yellowknifers, Giant was also the scene of a violent 1992 labor
dispute that saw nine miners murdered in a deliberately set
underground explosion.

After that, the failure of owner Royal Oak Mines left a pension
fund badly depleted by management's purchase of company stock.
Many longtime employees got a fraction of what they were owed.

The widows of the murdered miners were also forced to go through
years of civil litigation in an attempt to win a $10-million
wrongful death settlement, which eventually failed before the
Supreme Court.

Striking miner Roger Warren, convicted of the killings, remains in
prison on a life sentence.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: PAPHR Completes 5-Year Asbestos Survey
-------------------------------------------------------
Tyler Clarke for The Prince Albert Daily Herald Archive reports
that with government legislation coming through that would allow
the public to know what buildings contain asbestos, the local
health region and city are being proactive.

At the Prince Albert Parkland Health Region (PAPHR), an asbestos
survey that began in 2008 was completed a couple months ago.

Available on their website, www.paphr.sk.ca, the report highlights
which facilities have asbestos identified in them.

Although asbestos is in all of their buildings constructed built
before about 1980, that's nothing unusual, vice president of
operations John Piggott said.

"As long as it's sealed and not disturbed, I think it's said to be
safe," he said, noting that any asbestos that was found has been
sealed.

"You're going to find it in things like (pipe) elbows, and things
containing heat, like insulating pipes," he said.  "You find it in
some stuccos and ceilings, in particular.  Sometimes you find it
in walls, but most frequently of all any hot water pipes."

Although safe when contained, renovations and maintenance efforts
might expose staff and patients to the cancerous material.

"We've marked as much as possible, we've marked where there is
asbestos and we've made that available to our staff and
contractors so they don't disturb it," Piggott said.

"There's a fair variability of amount of asbestos in these
facilities -- sometimes you get a lot, sometimes not too much."

The list of asbestos-containing buildings within the city includes
the Victoria Union Hospital, 1521 Building, Pineview Terrace Lodge
and Family Futures.

In Prince Albert, the Herb Bassett Home, Mental Health Services,
Mont St. Joseph Home, Family Treatment Centre, Detox Centre and
the new Pineview Terrace Lodge do not have asbestos in them.

The buildings the health region leases haven't been inspected yet,
Piggott said, noting that this is one area that the program needs
to expand into.

When asbestos does have to be removed due to a renovation project,
Piggott said that the health region has four employees trained and
qualified to safely do the work.

The City of Prince Albert has undertook an annual asbestos review
of all of its buildings since 2007, with community services
director Greg Zeeben noting that many buildings contain the
material.

With asbestos posing no harm unless it's airborne, the asbestos
review is annual, so the city knows whether sealed asbestos has
become exposed due to building damage.

The results will be made public through city council in the near
future, Zeeben said, noting that this report is also submitted to
the provincial government on an annual basis.

Bill 604 -- labeled Howard's Law -- is the asbestos legislation
currently making its way through the legislative assembly.

Put forth by NDP Leader Cam Broten, the private member's bill is
currently going through its committee stage, after which it's
expected to be implemented, judging from MLAs unanimous support of
its second reading last week.

Howard's Law is named after Howard Willems, a building inspector
who died last year as a result of mesothelioma -- a cancer that
comes from inhaling asbestos fibers.

His dying wish was for the government to produce a publicly
available list of buildings that contain asbestos.

The Saskatchewan Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (SADAO),
the Public Service Alliance of Canada, Canadian Cancer Society and
Lung Association of Saskatchewan have all supported Willems' wish.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Flaws in Queensland Fibro Regulations Found
------------------------------------------------------------
Satish Karat, writing for TopNews.us, reports that an
investigation by Queensland Ombudsman Phil Clarke has asserted
that there were a large number of flaws in the asbestos
regulations of the state. A report regarding the same was
presented by him on Thursday, March 21, in state parliament.

It emerged in the investigation that there was confusion between
agencies and councils about their jurisdiction, roles and lack of
cooperation in solving the matters. He asserted, in the report,
that lack of coordination was root cause of many worrisome issues.

Therefore, he recommended some 36 changes to the present system to
check and respond to asbestos related events. He asked for
creation of new agency by the government that will be responsible
for managing and regulating asbestos.

It will further look into creation of a public online register of
licensed asbestos industry workers and contractors and keeping
records of their licenses. The new organization shall also be
working in collaboration with the locals councils to design
guidelines in order to provide information about asbestos to the
public.

Asbestos was linked to 640 deaths in Australia in 2010 from
diseases like asbestosis, lung, larynx and ovarian cancer and
mesothelioma. The cases are expected to increase between 2013 and
2021. "An increase in future incidences of mesothelioma from non-
occupational exposure from home renovation has also been
predicted", affirmed the report.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Queensland Accused of Endangering Lives
--------------------------------------------------------
Andree Withey, writing for ABC News, reports the Queensland
Government has been accused of putting lives at risk over
workplace health and safety cuts for asbestos testing.

The Transport Workers' Union (TWU) says lab technicians who test
asbestos samples have been cut from 45 to one.

TWU spokesman Peter Biagini says he only learned of the cuts this
week while waiting for test results on asbestos dumping in
Toowoomba.

"We've written a letter off to the Premier and asking him what
he's putting in place to ensure that we can get quick responses to
this," he said.

"It's not just about asbestos we're concerned about - any other
hazardous product that's around the state and needs to be sent to
the lab to ensure how serious it is."

The State Attorney-General's office, which is responsible for
asbestos testing, says there were never 45 testing officers.

A spokesman says there are currently six officers and more in
training, with private providers used in regional areas.

He says the turn-around time on tests is usually less than two
hours.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Firms Fined for Exposure Risk at Scrap Yard
------------------------------------------------------------
Health and Safety Executive, UK Government has issued the
following news release: A number of workers and Royal Navy
personnel were exposed to asbestos after pipes lined with the
dangerous material were left on a roadside before being put in an
open skip and transferred to a salvage yard, a court has heard.

The pipes, lined with asbestos insulation, were removed from HMS
Sultan naval training base in Gosport in September 2009 as part of
works to replace a hot water system.

Portsmouth Magistrates' Court was told March 20 that Southampton-
based VT Flagship Ltd was responsible for the works as the main
contractor for the HMS Sultan site.  The company contracted
Hertfordshire-based PPSL District Energy Limited to remove the
pipes and associated materials before PPSL in turn employed a
local welding firm and pipe fitter to undertake the work.

Magistrates heard that the old pipes were stacked by the side of
the road at the base before they were placed in an open metal
recycling skip and transferred to Demolition and Salvage Ltd in
Hilsea.

The salvage firm contacted the Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
on October 20, 2009 after discovering their premises was
contaminated with asbestos from the pipes.

A subsequent HSE investigation identified that both VT Flagship
and PPSL had failed to identify the presence of asbestos in the
pipes as a result of inaccurate assumptions and failures to
undertake thorough checks and surveys.

HSE also established that employees from both companies, as well
as workers from the salvage yard, the welder and pipe fitter sub-
contracted by PPSL plus anyone in the vicinity of the contaminated
pipes, including passing Navy personnel, could justly be deemed
'at risk' to asbestos exposure.

The insulation material should have been properly identified and
safely removed and disposed of by a licensed asbestos removal
specialist.

PPSL District Energy Limited, of Boxwell Road, Berkhamstead,
Herts, was fined a total of GBP18,000 and ordered to pay GBP4,291
in costs after pleading guilty to two breaches of the Control of
Asbestos Regulations 2006.

VT Flagship Ltd, of Grange Drive, Hedge End, Southampton, was
fined GBP12,000 with costs of GBP5,196 after also pleading guilty
to a single breach of the same legislation.

After the hearing HSE Inspector Adam Wycherley said: "Before
anyone undertakes any demolition or refurbishment works they must
take appropriate steps to ensure they have reliable information
regarding the materials they are dealing with, an essential
requirement that is specifically in place to identify the presence
of asbestos.

"VT Flagship and PPSL District Energy both failed in this regard.
They wrongly assumed there was no asbestos without carrying out
proper checks to back that up with hard evidence.

"As a result a number of workers for several different companies,
as well as passing Navy personnel, were put at unnecessary risk.
Anyone walking past the pipes could have inhaled fibres as they
became airborne, and they posed a major contamination hazard.

"Thousands of people die every year as a result of asbestos-
related disease, and duty holders cannot afford to take any
chances or make assumptions."

Further information on the dangers posed by asbestos can be found
online at http://www.hse.gov.uk/asbestos


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Found at NSW Towns
-----------------------------------------
Herald Sun reports that a massive clean-up job has begun for
residents in Victoria's northeast where more than 20 homes have
been reduced to rubble.  The towns of Mulwala, Yarrawonga,
Bundalong, Koonoomoo and Rutherglen are the hardest hit after
tornadoes ripped through the area.

Residents took to the streets to assess the damage. Many houses
have lost roofs and walls, while others are missing fences and
sheds.  Residents helped each other to remove strewn debris and
fallen trees and to clear twisted metal, shattered glass and
rubbish.

Asbestos has been found in metal sheeting at Denison County
Caravan Park in Mulwala, NSW, where 100 vans and cabins were
destroyed.  Fire and rescue crews have conducted a risk assessment
and removed strewn debris, gas cylinders and identified areas that
contained asbestos.

Jeremy Stubbs from Fire and Rescue NSW, said crews had to identify
buildings on the verge of collapse before they could let site
owners into the grounds in small groups.

"At this stage we are not letting anybody remove anything from
their sites until the asbestos is cleared," he said.

"Our priority is to move to the recovery phase and make things
safe."

Kelvin Weston-Green said his home on Williams St will have to be
bulldozed.

His roof is detached, the windows have blown in and the front of
his house has collapsed into a pile of bricks.  The family is
without power and was working to contact assessors and remove
furniture and anything that can be salvaged.

"My wife and son were inside the house at the time and tried to
hold the glass door but the kitchen window exploded and they ran,"
he said.

Eighty-year-old Margaret McGlynn was inside her house when the
tornado hit. She is staying with her son, Michael, until repairs
can be made.

"The wind blew in like a freight train," she said.

"I thought the roof was going in on me. I didn't think I was going
to get out."

The twister has wiped out a number of fruit orchards in Koonoomoo
and destroyed 15 homes.

Matt Santoro said 2000 fruit trees had been wiped out causing more
than $100,000 damage.

"The devastation has to be seen to be believed," he said.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Richardson Patrick Opens New Office in Illinois
----------------------------------------------------------------
Richardson, Patrick Westbrook & Brickman, LLC has opened an office
in Edwardsville, Illinois to better serve the firm's asbestos and
mesothelioma clients in the Edwardsville area. RPWB has hired
attorney Jena L. Borden as the member in charge of the new office.
Ms. Borden has represented plaintiffs in Southern Illinois and
Missouri courts for over a decade.

RPWB asbestos attorney Ken Wilson said, "The addition of Ms.
Borden will further strengthen our commitment to helping people
who have been diagnosed with asbestos-related diseases and
increase our depth of service. It will enable us to attempt to
give them the very best representation possible." RPWB has handled
asbestos cases in courts around the country for more than thirty
years.

Ms. Borden said, "The firm's commitment to helping those diagnosed
with mesothelioma was what drew me to Richardson Patrick Westbrook
& Brickman. RPWB's experience and success with asbestos litigation
will allow me to expand my practice enabling me to help more men
and women diagnosed with mesothelioma or lung cancer caused by
asbestos exposure."

Ms. Borden is a graduate of the University of Texas School of Law
and is a member of the American Association of Justice, the
Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, and the Madison County Bar
Association. She can be contacted at jborden@rpwb.com or by
calling (618) 307-5077.

Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman's expertise is in
representing plaintiffs in sophisticated civil litigation in areas
such as antitrust, asbestos, catastrophic personal injury, class
actions, consumer lending, environmental, pharmaceutical and
medical devices, products liability, and securities fraud. The
firm has offices in Charleston, Mt. Pleasant, and Barnwell, SC.
The new Edwardsville, IL office is located at Mark Twain Plaza II,
103 West Vandalia Street, Suite 212.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Baron and Budd Honored at Annual ADAO Conference
-----------------------------------------------------------------
On Friday, March 22, the Ninth International Asbestos Disease
Awareness Conference (ADAO) opens in Washington, DC, with a
powerful lineup of speakers aboard to discuss breaking news on
mesothelioma research, exposure laws and the fight to ban asbestos
use worldwide. This year's theme is "The Asbestos Crisis: New
Trends in Prevention and Treatment."

Dr. Barry Castleman will talk about "Global Civil and Criminal
Litigation: Trends and Judgments." Castleman, one of the world's
leading medical and legal experts on asbestos hazards, is the
author of Asbestos: Medical and Legal Aspects. He has testified
for both sides in lawsuits over occupational and environmental
asbestos disasters, as well as toxic substance regulation. He
helped make the 2010 BBC documentary, "Dangers in the Dust:
Exporting an Epidemic," which followed pro-asbestos lobby groups
strategically placed around the world to downplay the dangers of
chrysotile asbestos. Chrysotile is the most widely used form of
asbestos today (http://www.icij.org/project/dangers-dust).

Last year Castleman published a personal memoir on the landmark
Belgian Eternit (asbestos cement) trial, titled, "THE CRIMINAL
TRIAL OF STEPHAN SCHMIDHEINY IN TURIN, ITALY." The piece is a
firsthand account of how billionaire Eternit owners Stephan
Schmidheiny and Baron Louis de Cartier de Marchienne were
sentenced to 16 years each in prison for charges that included
manslaughter (for killing 6,000 workers in Italy, Switzerland, and
Brazil) and negligence in disregarding safety measures, according
to court documents. Read more in "Asbestos Executives Found Guilty
in Italy," posted February 14, 2012 at PRI's The World. (Sources:
http://worldasbestosreport.org/articles/eternit/eternit-toc.php,
ibasecretariat.org/eternit-great-asbestos-trial-chap-10.pdf,
ibasecretariat.org/eternit-great-asbestos-trial-chap-6.pdf) (Turin
Courthouse_C.SO V.EMANUELE II N.130_Turin)

Dr. Castleman's topic is red hot. Over 50 nations have now banned
asbestos use. The U.S. has not banned asbestos. "We are fortunate
to have the opportunity to hear Dr. Castleman speak in Washington
again this year," said Russell Budd, managing shareholder at
mesothelioma law firm Baron and Budd. "His presentations are
incredibly insightful and offer great information on asbestos
advocacy and the global battle against this deadly carcinogen."

Baron and Budd is pleased to repeat platinum-level ADAO
sponsorship for 2013. The firm's mesothelioma lawyers fully
support ADAO's mission to urge medical research on mesothelioma
and a worldwide ban. Watch for further updates on the ADAO
Conference or visit http://www.asbestosdiseaseawareness.org

If you have received a diagnosis for mesothelioma or any asbestos
disease, call 1.866.855.1229 or visit Mesothelioma News, Baron and
Budd's independent online forum dedicated to mesothelioma
(http://www.mesotheliomanews.com).

ABOUT BARON & BUDD, P.C.

The national mesothelioma law firm of Baron & Budd has earned a
prominent reputation for its 35-year history of "Protecting What's
Right" for asbestos sufferers and their families. In the 1970s, it
was one of the first law firms to successfully litigate an
asbestos lawsuit. Baron & Budd was founded expressly to represent
veterans, industry workers, and others afflicted by exposure to
asbestos. Its mesothelioma attorneys achieved the largest
mesothelioma verdict ever in the state of Texas, a $55 million
verdict for an asbestos sufferer and his family in El Paso
(Hernandez v. Kelly-Moore Paint Co., Inc., No. 20003559 Texas
Dist. Ct., El Paso Cty.)


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Removal at BNZ House Left to Owners
----------------------------------------------------------
Michael Wright, writing for ThePress.co.nz, reports the tricky
removal of asbestos from the BNZ House will be left to the owners
after the Government bailed on its demolition halfway through the
job.

The Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Cera) took over the
demolition of the quake-damaged office tower in 2011 after ruling
it was dangerous and rejecting a make-safe plan submitted by
consortium owner Cristo Ltd.  Cera planned to level the building,
but in December last year decided that with seven storeys
demolished it was safe and could be handed back to Cristo -- a
move its director has described as a "considerable difficulty".

"When the demolition commenced, the contract . . . was for a
complete demolition and the tenders and contract were provided to
the owner at that time," a Cera spokeswoman said.

"Cera is satisfied that [BNZ House] has been deconstructed to a
stage where it no longer poses a hazard as a dangerous building."

Hawkins is the project manager on BNZ House, and March McGee the
demolition contractor. Work was scheduled to finish last December.

The demolition has had a troubled history. Work stopped in July
last year when asbestos was found on steel beams encased in
concrete. Approval was needed to change the project from a "high-
reach" job, where massive excavators eat away the building, to a
"cut and crane" job -- where large sections of concrete are cut up
and removed intact.

In January it was revealed that demolition rubble contaminated
with asbestos lay uncovered in central Christchurch for weeks
before it was contained. Loose fibres of the harmful material were
found on Hereford St.

The decision in December to hand the building back to the owners
was "not at all" related to the asbestos recovery, the spokeswoman
said.

"We advised the building owner on 21 December 2012 that the
building was no longer structurally dangerous. At that time it
still had non-encapsulated asbestos in it that Cera undertook to
remove before handing the building back to the owner."

"Non-encapsulated" relates to asbestos found before demolition
started in service pipes, tile flooring, vinyl and paint in the
basement and in the perimeter of the tenth floor, but not asbestos
found encased in steel beams.

"Remaining encapsulated asbestos needs to be removed if further
[demolition] continues," the spokeswoman said.

Cristo director Stephen Bell said the consortium was "evaluating
its options".

"The original section 38 [notice under the Canterbury Earthquake
Recovery Act] was for the whole building to be demolished and then
Cera changed their mind in the last couple of months.

"Obviously that's a considerable difficulty for us. We're still
discussing it."

Cristo had not talked to Cera about what action it may take over
the demolition change, Bell said.

"But we're going to."

Cera issued a section 38 notice to Cristo in September 2011,
having found the building was dangerous. A Cera engineering
assessment found the building was tilting and that demolition was
the only option.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Hazmat Found at Kennedy Dr Construction Site
-------------------------------------------------------------
Luke Mortimer, writing for My Daily News, reports that asbestos
has been uncovered at a Tweed Heads construction site.  Water main
works at Ray Pascoe Park, Kennedy Dr, revealed asbestos clumps and
council workers were wearing HAZMAT suits to safely remove the
hazardous material this morning.  However, a Tweed Shire Council
media release stated that all precautions were being taken to
avoid any public exposure to the material.

"The work will include the removal of contaminated fill from the
park and this will be carried out following current legislation
and Codes of Practice," they said.

"An occupational hygienist has been engaged by council to
undertake air monitoring during the construction phase."

A council spokesman said that since the asbestos was clumped
together in the old refuse site, it could be considered less
dangerous than loose fibres of the material.

"When they were doing excavation they found asbestos, it was
clumped so not ultra dangerous. But they were being cautious," he
said.

The spokesman explained that asbestos and other dangerous material
was dumped at the site years ago, when regulations were not as
stringent.

"They're being cautious about what was dumped in the area."

Kennedy Dr will remain open to traffic during the construction,
which was estimated to be completed in five weeks.  Prolonged
inhalation of asbestos fibres can cause serious health problems,
including various forms of cancer.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Tarantula With Fibro Found in Cardiff
------------------------------------------------------
Ruby Lawrence at University of Durham, writing for
TheNationalStudent.com, reports that a team of surveyors were
horrified to discover the skin of a huge tarantula in a Cardiff
house -- the creature is now believed to be roaming free whilst
coated in asbestos.  Tarantulas often provoke the greatest fear in
people -- they are, admittedly, very big and very hairy.

However, they are generally one of the safest spiders to be
around; many tarantulas are calm creatures who will not attack
unless provoked, and produce a weak venom about as dangerous as a
bee or wasp sting.

A tarantula becomes much more dangerous though, when its covered
in asbestos.

Workers from the asbestos removal business Kuston Vorland
discovered an apparently 'huge' tarantula skin in an abandoned
house in Cardiff earlier this week. These arachnids shed their
skin and swell in size afterwards, which means the creature could
now be almost double the size of its discarded skin-jacket. Nice!
The spider could also be coated in asbestos, as the building in
which it made its home was riddled with the stuff.

The Cardiff Reptile Centre were shown a picture of the skin and
confirmed it was most definitely a tarantula, possibly of the
Chilean Rose variety.

Katie Parsons-Young was the unlucky surveyor who lifted up a
floorboard of the crumbling Welsh house to find a hairy leg
underneath. Speaking to Wales Online, she recounted shakily: "We
had lighting in there so we moved the lighting to the other area
of the attic where I was and could see there was something . . .
I was the first in. I sort of saw a leg, screamed and went."

The majority of the team fled the house in terror after the
horrific discovery, but a small number of brave souls summoned up
the courage to remain. They picked up the dreaded skin (which at
the time they believed was simply a dead tarantula).

If the spider is indeed a Chilean Rose, then it is a docile type
of tarantula. What's more dangerous is the fact it may be
asbestos-coated. This is not an animal you want to stroke. It is
not known if the Cardiff tarantula was a lost pet or if there is a
breeding population in the area.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: ADAO's 2013 Conference Draws to a Close
--------------------------------------------------------
Fight Mesothelomia Blog reports that March 24 marked the end of
the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization's ninth annual
conference in Washington, D.C.  The 2013 conference, entitled "The
Asbestos Crisis: New Trends in Prevention and Treatment," brought
together asbestos patients and their loved ones, caregivers and
medical experts from around the globe to discuss the topics most
important to the mesothelioma community.

This year, ADAO was able to offer live streaming video of the
conference for those who were unable to attend. The three-day
event featured a variety of group discussions, seminars and guest
speakers, and focused on four central topics: medical
advancements, advocacy, prevention and a ban on asbestos.

As a result of the hidden dangers exposed by Hurricane Sandy,
Linda Reinstein, co-founder and CEO of ADAO, decided to add an
additional section to address the dangers associated with the
aftermath of natural disasters.

The ADAO conference offered asbestos patients and their loved ones
the opportunity to meet with others who have been impacted by the
harmful substance and share their personal journeys with one
another.  It also allowed the medical community to speak on their
recent findings and share the most up-to-date medical advancements
with the mesothelioma community. This year, ADAO did another
magnificent job creating a platform for everyone in the fight
against asbestos to rally their efforts and find comfort through
community support.

The conference featured a line-up of special guests, including
keynote speakers Capt. Aubrey Miller and Karen Banton.  Capt.
Miller is the Senior Medical Advisor and National Institute of
Environmental Health Sciences Liaison to the U.S. Department of
Health and Human Services. Karon Banton is the widow of late
activist Bernie Banton and CEO of the Bernie Banton Foundation.

Linda founded ADAO in 2004 after her husband, Alan Reinstein, was
diagnosed with mesothelioma, a cancer caused by asbestos exposure
can be found in the pleural lining of the lungs, the lining of the
stomach or the heart. Alan eventually lost his battle to
mesothelioma. Linda was devastated, but also moved to fight back
and start advocating for the victims of asbestos exposure. She
established ADAO and helped create a united voice for those who
have been impacted by asbestos disease to call for change. ADAO is
now the largest independent asbestos victims organization in the
U.S.

The mesothelioma law firm of Baron and Budd is a committed
supporter of ADAO and sponsored the kick-off dinner for the
conference. The firm is a platinum sponsor of the organization and
fervently believes in ADAO's mission of education, prevention and
advocating for a global ban on asbestos. Baron and Budd applauds
ADAO for a tremendous event and looks forward to attending next
year's conference.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: GBP640k Spent on Cwmcarn Fibro Crisis
------------------------------------------------------
Natalie Crockett, writing for South Wales Argus, reports that
Caerphilly council will have spent at least GBP643,364 dealing
with the issues of asbestos at Cwmcarn High School come the end of
the school year.  This includes the costs of surveys, transporting
pupils to alternative accommodation in Ebbw Vale and keeping the
vacant school secure.  But nothing has yet been done to manage or
remove asbestos at the site.

This amount does not take in account costs for the latest
management survey by Ensafe or the fee being paid to asbestos
expert Robin Howie who is advising the council on the issue.
Information obtained under the Freedom of Information Act shows
the total cost of keeping the building safe since pupils and
teachers were forced to leave will amount to GBP39,552 by the end
of July.

It also shows the council spent GBP68,000 getting the redundant
Coleg Gwent building in Ebbw Vale fit for purpose, including a
general clean up, correcting defective equipment and removing
surplus items.

The authority is not paying the institution anything to rent the
building but it incurred GBP2,000 in legal costs, spent GBP20,000
on improved security, GBP33,000 to move materials and equipment
from Cwmcarn and GBP4,000 cleaning costs.

So far the council has spent GBP260,000 transporting pupils to
their new home in Ebbw Vale and by the end of summer term this
will have risen to GBP471,000.

The authority has already said the total cost of the relocation
could be up to GBP1.4 million, which includes the running costs of
the building.  The initial Santia Asbestos Management Ltd report,
which sparked the closure, cost the council GBP5,812, the figures
show.

For this the company carried out a survey of heater cabinets,
asbestos bulk and dust sampling. It also conducted air sampling in
Block A and reviewed all previous asbestos surveys undertaken at
the site including asbestos management, refurbishment and
demolition surveys before compiling a report on its findings.

Costs for the latest Ensafe management report funded by the
council are not available.

Kelly East, of the Save Cwmcarn campaign group, said she was
"disgusted" at the costs, which, she said could have been avoided
had the asbestos been dealt with in situ as the school asked.

She said: "It's ridiculous.

It's really disgusting that they don't seem to have taken into
consideration the long term costs. We said from the beginning we
wanted to remain on the site and put up portacabins -- that was
put to them and dismissed.

"They were wrong to move us to Ebbw Vale, we could have done
everything they wanted in situ and save this money for the work
needed."

The information also showed the council carried out eight building
projects at the school in the past five years totalling GBP376,420
- GBP15,000 of which was specifically allocated to the removal of
asbestos in 2009/10.

Parents have now launched a Buy a Brick campaign to raise the GBP1
million it will cost to remove asbestos at the site.

Caerphilly council declined to comment.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Found in Warwick Home
--------------------------------------------
Georja Ryan, writing for Warwick Daily News, reports that when
Emily Mann noticed the plasterboard chipping in her three-month-
old son's bedroom, she thought it was just in need of some paint.
But when chunks of wall crumbled to the floor, she knew something
was wrong.

"The landlord came and inspected it and told me it was asbestos,"
Ms Mann said.

"I contacted the asbestos people in Brisbane and told them what
was going on, and they said 'get out right now'."

Ms Mann and her three-month-old son, Eli Dobbins, have been living
in the Cunningham Hwy house, about 30km out of Warwick, for the
past 10 months.  She said she was horrified to learn she had been
breathing air that could well have carried asbestos particles, and
exposed her friends, family and baby.

"The owner should have known it needed inspecting and the real
estate should really investigate the house, especially knowing
it's 100 years old," Ms Mann said.

After three weeks of rigorous searching for a new home, Ms Mann
finally found a rental property that accepted dogs and chickens
and can move out of her asbestos-ridden home - much to her
delight.

She warned others living in older homes to have them checked for
asbestos before it was too late.

Ms Mann's story comes as Queensland's ombudsman hinted at the
failure of the state agency entrusted with the responsibility for
asbestos management and recommended an entirely new oversight
body.

Ombudsman Phil Clarke's report into asbestos regulation, tabled in
Parliament last week, highlighted confusion over who was
responsible for dealing with the toxic material.  There was found
to be widespread confusion between councils and government
agencies about whose responsibility it was to deal with asbestos.

The ombudsman has recommended a lead agency to act as a decision-
maker on such issues.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Canada's Federal Budget Pulls Plug on Asbestos
---------------------------------------------------------------
Mia Rabson, writing for the Winnipeg Free Press, reports that if
the asbestos industry in Canada was on life-support, last week's
federal budget finally pulled the plug.  It was hidden midway
through the budget papers, amid the more flashy and noticeable
cuts to the cost of baby clothes and the "largest long-term
federal commitment to Canadian infrastructure in our nation's
history."

"Supporting the Economic Transition of Communities Economically
Linked to the Chrysotile Asbestos Industry," said the headline on
page 241.

"Historically, the chrysotile asbestos industry has been a
significant employer in the communities of Thetford Mines and
Asbestos in the province of Quebec," reads the section. "Due to
the decline of the industry, these communities are now exploring
ways to diversify their local economies and create new jobs.
Confirming the commitment made by the government in September
2012, Economic Action Plan 2013 proposes to provide $50 million
over seven years to Canada Economic Development for Quebec regions
to support economic diversification efforts in the communities of
Thetford Mines and Asbestos."

The money was actually first promised last September, announced by
Christian Paradis, the country's industry minister, who also
represents Thetford Mines and Asbestos in Parliament and was born
in Thetford Mines.

The budget delivered on the promise.

For years, Liberal and Conservative governments held their fingers
in their ears as the evidence mounted about the dangers of
asbestos.

Medical experts and workplace-safety advocates called for Canada
to stop mining the substance, whose fibres can lead to deadly lung
disease and cancer if inhaled.

Yet Canada kept saying it was safe.

"Canada stands by its position that the policy of controlled use
is well-founded because it has a sound scientific basis and is a
responsible approach," said a spokesman for then-foreign affairs
minister Lawrence Cannon in 2009.

Canada wouldn't even agree to add chrysotile asbestos to an
international list of toxic substances. The list, part of the
Rotterdam Convention, wouldn't bar the use or export of the
substances but requires exporting nations to warn importing
nations of the dangers.

So not only were we still exporting the stuff, we didn't even want
to have to warn people it might kill them.

Canada has barely used asbestos in our own country for years.
We're spending millions to remove asbestos from the Parliament
Buildings. Asbestos found in a home inspection can send potential
buyers running for cover. Canadians know it's dangerous and want
nothing to do with it.

But until recently, we were still shipping more than 150,000
tonnes of the stuff overseas each year, mostly to places such as
India and Indonesia where workplace-safety regulations are sparse
to non-existent.

Photos and videos of workers covered in asbestos in plants
overseas weren't enough to change the government's mind. An
investigation by the CBC in 2010 documented exactly how Canada's
asbestos was being used. It showed workers using it with no
protection, not even minimal face masks.

But there were a few hundred workers left in the two mines in
Thetford Mines and Asbestos, and no government seemed willing to
put them out of work. What was the health of thousands of workers
in Asia compared to saving the jobs of a few hundred Canadians,
jobs that just happened to be in the riding of the industry
minister?

So Canada kept agreeing to export it to developing countries and
kept giving the Chrysotile Institute money to promote the product.

So what suddenly changed?

In November 2011, the last of the mines stopped operating.

Then, last fall, the Parti Quebecois won the election in Quebec
and Premier Pauline Marois pledged to pull the plug on a proposal
by Liberal Premier Jean Charest to loan the asbestos industry $58
million.

It was the last of the few lifelines left for the industry.

Without any mines operating and the promise of reopening off the
table, the political need to keep supporting asbestos was finally
outweighed by the political damage of supporting it.

So it was that Canada finally said it would stop opposing the
addition of chrysotile asbestos to the Rotterdam Convention.

How Canada handles that matter will be seen next month during the
annual meeting of the Rotterdam Convention.

Manitoba MP Pat Martin, who worked in asbestos mines in the Yukon
and has some lung damage because of it, has been fighting against
the industry for years.

He said the government deciding to finally find something else for
the two asbestos towns to do is "the final nail in the coffin."

But he won't stop his crusade against the industry just yet. "I
won't stand down until they ban asbestos in all its forms," said
Martin.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Abatement Conducted USAF Antenna-Testing Facility
------------------------------------------------------------------
Jonathan Phelps, writing for The Salem News, reports that passers-
by might be wondering what the men in hazardous materials suits
are doing at the shuttered U.S. Air Force antenna-testing facility
on Skytop Road.  They are conducting asbestos abatement, according
to Tim Dugan, a spokesman for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The bulk of the work will be completed by April 1, he said in a
statement.

"The pedestrians are perfectly safe as long as they don't enter
the restricted construction site," Dugan said.

The facility, on Ipswich's Great Neck peninsula, was used for
testing and research on Cold War-era antenna and radar technology.
The Air Force has leased the property from the Proprietors of
Great Neck, a family group that owns the land, since 1945.

The Air Force inactivated and officially closed the facility over
the summer of 2011. Upon termination of the lease, the landowners
have asked the Air Force to demolish all structures on the 65-acre
site.

Upon closing the Great Neck facility, the Air Force transferred
its unit to Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico. The testing
formerly conducted in Ipswich is now done at Wright-Patterson Air
Force Base in Ohio.

The facility sits atop of a large hill in a residential
neighborhood, overlooking the Parker River-Plum Island Sound
Estuary.

"The purpose of the project is to restore the site to conditions
similar to those encountered on the site when the U.S. Air Force
first occupied the location in 1943," Dugan wrote. "The site has
been leased by the U.S. Air Force since the end of World War II
and has served as an antenna-test facility since that time."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Found in Willard Hall
--------------------------------------------
Nathan Laudan, contributing writer for The Collegian, reports that
students may have begun to notice that the 4th floor or "attic" of
Willard Hall is closed with a yellow sticker stating "Danger of
Asbestos." This room, usually full of students, stands empty
because of the threat.

This is not the only place that asbestos has been found at
K-State. Division of facilities supervisor Larry McCoy confirmed
cases of asbestos prevalent in the ceilings of the K-State Student
Union and the basement of Waters Hall to name a few.

This doesn't come as a shock since many building materials such as
insulation, ceiling tiles, roofing materials and shingles were
built with the minerals that contain asbestos, according to the
United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) website.

The Union, in particular, has received more attention lately due
to discussion of its remodel and potential expansion after
research conducted to identify problems with the current building.
After the discovery of the asbestos, Union employees were notified
of its presence, but according to Jenni Jones, assistant director
of greek affairs, employees were told, "it doesn't pose a threat
as long as the ceilings aren't disturbed."

She said there have been some restrictions on what the employees
are allowed to do in the office because of the asbestos concern.

"I can't have any alterations to my office so that way we don't
disturb it," Jones said.

Their office has taken precautions such as not having walls on
their offices that go all the way up to the ceiling.

"It is too expensive to do anything about it right now," Jones
said.

Even though Union employees were warned and have taken the
necessary precautions, they are not the building's only users.

Ben Brown, sophomore in agriculture economics who said he
considers himself a frequent user of the Union, said he had no
idea there was asbestos present.

"I probably visit at least once a day," Brown said.

When asked if he had any concerns for his own or other students'
health, Brown said no.

"It's not like we live there or sleep there. But I would be
concerned if I worked in one of the offices and was breathing it
everyday," Brown said.

He also said that while he "isn't blaming anyone," something
should be done to fix it.

Asbestos has been confirmed in multiple buildings throughout
K-State, but so far there have been no confirmed cases of disease
or cancer linked back to campus buildings. Currently, the only
confirmed remodeling efforts to rid these buildings of asbestos
have been the talks about the Union remodeling project.

Fortunately for K-State students, asbestos-containing products and
building materials are perfectly safe as long as they are not
damaged or disturbed.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Chicopee City Council Sets Aside Cleanup Plan
--------------------------------------------------------------
Jeanette DeForge, writing for The Republican, reports that the
Chicopee City Council once again put off voting on a proposal to
spend $230,000 to remove asbestos from the former library so the
structural integrity of the building can be studied.  The council
has been discussing several orders for the proposal filed by Mayor
Michael D. Bissonnette for more than a year. It rejected it once
in May and has sent at least one to the finance committee another
time for more study.

The committee last week again voted 12-1 to send it to
subcommittee, even though the identical order is already on the
list of topics to be discussed. When reminded of that, Councilor
James K. Tillotson responded, "I know. I want it to have company."

Bissonnette, who is proposing to have the former library renovated
and used to replace the aging school department offices, said the
structural integrity of the building cannot be examined until the
asbestos is removed.  Although the order this time said the
$230,000, which is to be taken from the sale of real estate
account, is for a feasibility study, officials said it is mostly
for the removal of asbestos.  The asbestos is so widespread no
work can be done without it being removed, said Lee Pouliot,
administrator and planner for the Community development office.

"It is in the floor tiles. It is in the plaster itself," he said.

"No matter what happens with that building, the asbestos has to be
removed," said city lawyer Karen Betournay.

The School Committee also discussed the issue the day before the
vote was taken but declined to weigh in on whether the City
Council should approve the removal of the asbestos, saying it did
not want to tell councilors how to do their job. Two weeks earlier
the School Committee did vote to express interest in moving into
the library.

But City Council members questioned if this is the right time to
start a project that will eventually cost millions if the building
can be renovated. The actual cost will not be known until experts
can look at it.

"I think it is a good project, but I'm not going to support it. We
have so many irons in the fire that sometimes you have to say no,"
Councilor Frederick T. Krampits said.

The city plans to break ground for a new $8 million senior center
in early April, is working on the plans for the conversion of the
old Chicopee High School to a middle school, and has a number of
other, smaller projects under way.

Councilor John L. Vieau agreed, saying he wants to slow down
spending and this project can wait until others are finished.

"I just don't thing it is the right time. There are a lot of open-
ended projects," he said.

But Councilor Gerry Roy disagreed, saying he believed it is
important to be able to know if it is possible to use the former
library, and it will help the School Committee with long-term
planning.

"I think we should start the ball rolling to find out if it is
feasible," he said. "I think this is step one, (spending of) any
other money will have to come before us."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Redhills Offers Awareness Training Courses
-----------------------------------------------------------
Leading asbestos and environmental consultancy, Redhills are
taking bookings for their Asbestos Awareness Training Courses for
2013.

The Asbestos Awareness courses are aimed at anyone working on the
fabric of buildings, who has the potential to disturb asbestos
during their routine activities which would include anything from
putting up a picture hook to large scale refurbishment.

Sixteen target groups of workers that require Asbestos Awareness
training have been identified at both operative and supervisor
levels. General maintenance staff, electricians, plumbers, gas
fitters, painters and decorators, joiners, plasterers, demolition
workers, construction workers, roofers, heating and ventilation
engineers, telecommunication engineers, burglar and fire alarm
installers, computer installers, architects, building surveyors,
shop fitters and other such professionals are the trades at most
risk. A risk assessment should be undertaken for any other members
of staff to determine whether they 'have the potential to disturb
asbestos during their routine activities' and if they do,
awareness training should be provided.

Kieran Moon, Operations Director said: "Redhills are pleased to
offer a suite of training courses that complement our vision 'To
Protect Life'. These courses will help to deliver the key skills
that will ensure personnel always work in a safe manner and have a
wider awareness of the environmental conditions they are working
within.".

Jim Anderson, Head of Training said: "We are excited about our
training course portfolio and look forward to working with all of
our existing and new customers throughout the UK and supporting
the up-skilling of themselves and their workforces through our
comprehensive training courses."

The Asbestos Awareness Training course can be delivered from any
of the Redhills training centres located throughout the UK or
within a customer specific location.

Services Include:

Surveying

Consultancy and Analysis

Compliance Management

Redhills -- http://www.redhills.co.uk-- is part of the Silverdell
PLC Group of companies which works globally with organisations to
help them protect people, assets and reputation.  We provide peace
of mind through our unique portfolio of end-to-end Specialist
Environmental Support Services. Working in highly hazardous
regulated environments, Redhills delivers asbestos and
environmental consulting, training and compliance monitoring to
the built and natural environment.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Removal Plan in Tasmania Too Costly
----------------------------------------------------------
ABC Australia reports that Tasmania's councils have taken aim at
the State Government's plan to remove asbestos from all
government-owned buildings by 2030.  There is concern the plan is
not feasible and there is not enough money or expertise in the
state to complete the massive task.

Councils have cast doubt over whether the goal is realistic.  The
Local Government Association's Barry Easther says the plan has not
been properly considered.

"What costs are going to be involved and how everyone's going to
pay for it?"

The Launceston City Council's Robert Dobrzynski says the plan
extends to civic infrastructure, including the existing network of
asbestos-based water piping.

"There would be literally hundreds of kilometres of asbestos
pipe."

The Workplace Relations Minister, David O'Byrne, says the
Government is still trying to work out the cost of the plan.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Guide to Safe Management of Fibro
------------------------------------------------------
Despite better management and reduced production of asbestos,
there remains considerable room for improvement, primarily to
reduce the number of deaths. It is still estimated that more than
107,000 people die each year from mesothelioma, lung cancer and
asbestosis -- the three major asbestos-related diseases -- as a
result of occupational exposure.

The report's author, Robin Townsend, Lloyd's Register's Regulatory
Affairs Lead Specialist, said, "Far from being a problem of the
past, asbestos is still produced in many countries and is still
widely used, and it is present in many existing buildings and
structures, including ships. Most countries still do not have
effective prohibitions and global production is still over 40% of
peak values. It is imperative that we see further and substantial
improvements in regulatory enforcement and a reduction in asbestos
related mortality."

Ships often have an increased risk of asbestos exposure. The use
of asbestos in shipbuilding has been unusually high over the years
and some of the most dangerous asbestos application methods have
been particularly prevalent in ship construction.

A U.K. study estimated a 61% increased incidence of asbestos
related illness in shipyard workers. A similar study in Trieste,
Italy, showed that of 153 men who had died of malignant
mesothelioma 99 had worked in shipbuilding, 19 had been in the
navy/merchant marine and seven had been dockworkers


ASBESTOS UPDATE: EPA Has Cleanup Plan for Corio Bay Foreshore
-------------------------------------------------------------
Peter Begg, writing for Geelong Advertiser in Australia, reports
that city hall has this week given the EPA its clean-up plans for
an illegal asbestos on the Corio Bay foreshore, more than 10
months after its existence was revealed by the Geelong Advertiser.
The area, littered with broken corrugated sheets along the cliffs
and shoreline next to the GrainCorp pier, is Crown land managed by
the council.

City services general manager Gary Van Driel said the city sought
EPA approval for its clean-up plan.  "The proposed clean-up plan
was developed following negotiations between council and DSE,
together with professional advice from asbestos management
consultants," Mr. Van Driel said.

"The plan identifies a series of immediate actions together with a
longer-term monitoring program."

Immediate proposed action includes collecting the scattered
asbestos material by hand, and sealing off part of the cliff face
with matting.

"The area will be revegetated and fenced to exclude public access,
and monitored on a regular basis over time," Mr. Van Driel said.

A spokeswoman for the EPA said the city provided the EPA a final
report on the asbestos this week, and it would now be reviewed.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: 180 Health Care Sites in Canada Contain Fibro
--------------------------------------------------------------
CBC News reports that documents obtained by Radio-Canada through
access to information requests reveal 180 health care sites in the
province contain asbestos, and there could be more.  The buildings
known to contain the carcinogenic fibre, which was once used as a
fire-retardant, include various hospitals, clinics, and long-term
care homes.

Provincial authorities acknowledge the list is incomplete and say
they are working to create a registry, but it will be at least two
more years before it is complete.  Officials will have two years
to determine the level of asbestos in their buildings, and report
it.

The CSN labour federation, which represents more than 120,000
health care workers in Quebec, wants the government to take action
sooner.

"It's worrying. That's why, as unions, we are asking that asbestos
regulations be changed," said Guy Laurion, vice-chair of the CSN
labour federation.

Luc de Repentigny, with the Hull hospital, said officials there
are careful to cordon off areas that pose a risk and take the
"highest precautions."

But environmental activist Daniel Green says that might not be
enough.

He said there is always a risk, even when hospital officials take
precautions like sealing off contaminated areas under renovation.

"Often maintenance employees will unknowingly carry the fibres on
their uniform to upper floors [of the hospital] that are not
protected," Green said.

Green is calling for asbestos to be removed entirely from all
Quebec health care establishments.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Test Approved at Rachel Hill School
----------------------------------------------------------
David Hurst, writing for The Tribune-Democrat, reports that when
Richland School District's Rachel Hill Elementary opened its doors
to students in 1960, state officials called it a model of cost
efficiency.

Built for $497,272, nearly $200 below the statewide per-student
average cost at the time, the school's basic, rectangular design
used cement block walls instead of plaster and simple skylights to
brighten its 18 classrooms.

Six years after its schoolhouse days ended, district officials
indicated they'll soon aim for a new taxpayer-friendly price tag
for Rachel Hill -- one that will either bring new life to the
school -- or bring it down.  Board members took the first step
toward both options Monday, accepting a Shanks-ville company's
$650 offer to test for asbestos in the old school.

"No matter what we do with Rachel Hill -- whether we sell it, fix
it or bulldoze it -- we're the ones responsible for asbestos
abatement," Superintendent Thomas Fleming said.

The board gave permission for Allegheny Mountain Re-search to
collect samples inside the school.

Allegheny Mountain expects to test as many as 10 samples,
including some from generations-old floor tiles, and will then
provide an estimate to remove the fibrous material, Fleming told
the board.

Rachel Hill's future remains unclear, but there seems to be
renewed interest in exploring renovation possibilities.  Once
renovated, the building could be leased as office space or brought
back in line as a district-owned tutoring hub or day care center
-- if the price is right, board members said.  The district
potentially could partner with existing agencies to put new
programs such as an early childhood education center in place at
Rachel Hill, Fleming said.

"Maybe another school could move in there. Maybe offices," board
member Anthony Rizzo said.

The district still uses the site for some storage, but
administrators described parts of the building as unusable last
year when they were fielding offers for the property surrounding
it.  At the time, an Ohio developer proposed a shopping center on
the land, but district residents, concerned about added traffic
and losing a district practice field, convinced board members to
shoot down the idea.

"We have an asset just sitting there on a nice piece of property,"
Rizzo said, adding that it will be up to the board to find a fit
for the site that doesn't disrupt the campus environment and
"hopefully, will save taxpayers money."

"This first step is to see what it'll take to get it up and
running again," Fleming said. "Is it economically wise . . . and
what would the return on that investment be? We don't know yet."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Employees Sue Nassau Coliseum Over Fibro Exposure
------------------------------------------------------------------
LongIsland.com reports that preliminary reports indicate Nassau
Coliseum is safe for patrons, but asbestos was found in areas
frequented by staff. The Coliseum now faces lawsuits from
employees . . .

As if Nassau Coliseum hasn't been hit hard enough with news of the
New York Islanders leaving to go to the Barclays Center in
Brooklyn at the end of 2015, it now faces multiple lawsuits from
employees alleging it failed to protect them from asbestos
exposure.

There are more than 100 current and former employees of Nassau
Coliseum involved in the lawsuit-proceeding that seeks between
$500 million to $1 billion.  The injured parties are being
represented by attorney Joseph Dell. It is likely that the
lawsuits will be consolidated into a class action suit.

One of the participants in the filing is a widow of a heating and
air conditioning technician who has filed a wrongful death suit.
There have also been workers diagnosed with asbestos related
illnesses and a worker who has died from lung cancer.

Twenty one defendants are named in the lawsuit, including the
Coliseum, Nassau County, SMG, the New York Islanders and
Cablevision.

A lawyer for Nassau County dismisses the claims from the lawsuit
-- that it lacks substance.

Preliminary reports have indicated the building is safe for
patrons, but asbestos was found in areas frequented by staff,
including electricians, carpenters, mechanics, plumbers, and
general laborers.

Some of the areas where asbestos was found include private
stairwells and corridors, an ice plant room, a tunnel below the
exhibition hall, a catwalk above the arena, and a loading dock.

Nassau Coliseum was built in 1972 -- around a time when building
materials were later found to contain asbestos. These building
materials included tiles, insulation, and cement. Individuals
overexposed to asbestos have been found to development all sorts
of respiratory problems as well as cancerous tumors.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Chiquita Brands Expects Dismissal of 30 PI Cases
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Chiquita Brands International, Inc., expects approximately 5% of
600 cases filed by merchant seamen alleging injury or illnesses
from exposure to asbestos to be dismissed without payment in 2013,
according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

For more than 20 years, a number of claims have been filed against
the Company on behalf of merchant seamen or their personal
representatives alleging injury or illness from exposure to
asbestos while employed as seamen on company-owned ships at
various times from the mid-1940s until the mid-1970s. The claims
are based on allegations of negligence and unseaworthiness. In
these cases, the company is typically one of many defendants,
including manufacturers and suppliers of products containing
asbestos, as well as other ship owners. Seven of these cases are
pending in state courts in various stages of activity. Over the
past fourteen years, 26 state court cases have been settled and 45
state court cases have been resolved without any payment. In
addition to the state court cases, there are federal court cases
(known as the "MARDOC" cases), which are managed under the
supervision of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of
Pennsylvania. A total of approximately 5,500 MARDOC cases have
been brought against the company, approximately 4,900 have been
dismissed; 46 of these cases had earlier been re-activated against
the company, of which 35 cases were dismissed without any
settlement payment. The court has been issuing scheduling orders
in connection with the company's remaining approximately 600
MARDOC cases, approximately 5% of which are expected to be
dismissed without payment during 2013. As a matter of law,
punitive damages are not recoverable in seamen's asbestos cases.
Although the company has little factual information with which to
evaluate these maritime asbestos claims, management does not
believe, based on information currently available to it and advice
of counsel, that these claims will, individually or in the
aggregate, have a material adverse effect on the consolidated
financial statements of the company.

Chiquita Brands International, Inc. (CBII), along with its
subsidiaries, is an international marketer and distributor of
bananas and other fresh produce, sold under the Chiquita and other
brand names in 70 countries, and packaged salads sold under the
Fresh Express and other brand names primarily in the United
States.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Midwest Generation Had $53M Liability at Dec. 31
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Midwest Generation LLC had $53 million recorded in liabilities
subject to compromise (LSTC) at December 31, 2012, for asbestos
claims, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

Midwest Generation entered into a supplemental agreement with
Commonwealth Edison and Exelon Generation Company LLC on February
20, 2003 to resolve a dispute regarding interpretation of Midwest
Generation's reimbursement obligation for asbestos claims under
the environmental indemnities set forth in the Asset Sale
Agreement. Under this supplemental agreement, Midwest Generation
agreed to reimburse Commonwealth Edison and Exelon Generation for
50% of specific asbestos claims pending as of February 2003 and
related expenses less recovery of insurance costs, and agreed to a
sharing arrangement for liabilities and expenses associated with
future asbestos-related claims as specified in the agreement. The
obligations under this agreement are not subject to a maximum
liability. The supplemental agreement had an initial five-year
term with an automatic renewal provision for subsequent one-year
terms (subject to the right of either party to terminate);
pursuant to the automatic renewal provision, the supplemental
agreement has been extended until February 2014. There were
approximately 235 cases for which Midwest Generation was
potentially liable that had not been settled and dismissed at
December 31, 2012. Midwest Generation had $53 million recorded in
LSTC and $54 million recorded as a liability at December 31, 2012
and 2011, respectively, related to this contractual indemnity.

Midwest Generation LLC, an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of
Edison Mission Energy, was formed in 1999 for the purpose of
owning or leasing, making improvements to, and operating and
selling the capacity and energy of, the power generation assets it
purchased from Commonwealth Edison Company (Commonwealth Edison).


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Houston Wire Continues to Defend PI Suits
----------------------------------------------------------
Houston Wire & Cable Company continues to defend itself against
lawsuits alleging that certain of their products contained
asbestos, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "From time to time, we are involved in
lawsuits that are brought against us in the normal course of
business. We are not currently a party to any legal proceedings
that we expect, either individually or in the aggregate, to have a
material adverse effect on our business or financial condition.
We, along with many other defendants, have been named in a number
of lawsuits in the state courts of Illinois, Minnesota, North
Dakota, and South Dakota alleging that certain wire and cable
which may have contained asbestos caused injury to the plaintiffs
who were exposed to this wire and cable. These lawsuits are
individual personal injury suits that seek unspecified amounts of
money damages as the sole remedy. It is not clear whether the
alleged injuries occurred as a result of the wire and cable in
question or whether we, in fact, distributed the wire and cable
alleged to have caused any injuries. We maintain general liability
insurance that, to date, has covered the defense of and all costs
associated with these claims. In addition, we did not manufacture
any of the wire and cable at issue, and we would rely on any
warranties from the manufacturers of such cable if it were
determined that any of the wire or cable that we distributed
contained asbestos which caused injury to any of these plaintiffs.
In connection with ALLTEL's sale of our company in 1997, ALLTEL
provided indemnities with respect to costs and damages associated
with these claims that we believe we could enforce if our
insurance coverage proves inadequate."

Houston Wire & Cable Company provides wire and cable and related
services to the United States market. The Company offers its
customers with a single-source solution for wire and cable,
hardware and related services.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ecology Unit Pays Construction Penalty
-------------------------------------------------------
A subsidiary of Ecology and Environment, Inc., is subject to a
compliance order that requires it to pay penalties concerning
construction improvement activities of a certain property that was
the subject of asbestos remediation, according to the Company's
Form 10-Q filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the quarterly period ended January 31, 2013.

On September 21, 2012 the Colorado Department of Public Health and
Environment (the "Department") issued a proposed Compliance Order
on Consent (the " Proposed Consent Order") to the City and County
of Denver ("Denver") and to Walsh Environmental Scientists and
Engineers, LLC ("Walsh").  Walsh is a majority-owned subsidiary of
Ecology and Environment, Inc.  The Proposed Consent Order concerns
construction improvement activities of certain property owned by
Denver which was the subject of asbestos remediation.  Denver had
entered into a contract with Walsh for Walsh to provide certain
environmental consulting services (asbestos monitoring services)
in connection with the asbestos containment and/or removal
performed by other contractors at Denver's real property.  Without
admitting liability or the Department's version of the underlying
facts, Walsh on February 13, 2013 entered into a Compliance Order
on Consent with the Department and paid a penalty of less than
$0.1 million and paid for a Supplemental Environmental Project to
benefit the public at large in an amount less than $0.1 million.
Denver was served with a final Compliance Order and Assessment of
Administrative Penalty against Denver alone for approximately $0.2
million.  Under Walsh's environmental consulting contract with
Denver, Walsh has agreed to indemnify Denver for certain
liabilities where Walsh could potentially be held responsible for
a portion of the penalty imposed upon Denver.  Walsh has put its
professional liability and general liability carriers on notice of
this indemnification claim by Denver.  The Company believes that
this administrative proceeding involving Walsh will not have an
adverse material effect upon the operations of the Company.

Ecology and Environment, Inc., is a global broad-based
environmental consulting firm whose underlying philosophy is to
provide professional services worldwide so that sustainable
economic and human development may proceed with minimum negative
impact on the environment.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Everest Had $422.849MM Reserves at Dec. 31
-----------------------------------------------------------
Everest Reinsurance Holdings, Inc., had gross asbestos loss
reserves of $422,849,000, according to the Company's Form 10-K
filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the
fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

At December 31, 2012, the gross reserves for A&E losses were
comprised of $138,449 thousand representing case reserves reported
by ceding companies, $90,637 thousand representing additional case
reserves established by the Company on assumed reinsurance claims,
$36,667 thousand representing case reserves established by the
Company on direct excess insurance claims, including Mt. McKinley
and $177,068 thousand representing IBNR reserves.

With respect to asbestos only, at December 31, 2012, the Company
had gross asbestos loss reserves of $422,849 thousand, or 95.5%,
of total A&E reserves, of which $339,654 thousand was for assumed
business and $83,195 thousand was for direct business.

Everest Reinsurance Holdings, Inc.'s principal business, conducted
through its operating segments, is the underwriting of reinsurance
and insurance in the U.S. and international markets.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Reading Int'l. Incurs $8.6MM in Site Preparation
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Reading International, Inc., has incurred a total of US$8.6
million (AUS$8.3 million) associated with the removal of soil
contaminated with petroleum and asbestos, according to the
Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2012.

The Company states: "In connection with the development of our
50.6 acre Burwood site, it will be necessary to address certain
environmental issues. That property was at one time used as a
brickworks and we have discovered petroleum and asbestos at the
site.  During 2007, we developed a plan for the remediation of
these materials, in some cases through removal and in other cases
through encapsulation.  As of December 31, 2012, we estimate that
the total site preparation costs associated with the removal of
this contaminated soil will be $17.7 million (AUS$17.1 million)
and as of that date we had incurred a total of $8.6 million
(AUS$8.3 million) of these costs.  We do not believe that this has
added materially to the overall development cost of the site, as
it is anticipated that all of the work will be done in connection
with the excavation and other development activity already
contemplated for the property."

Reading International, Inc., is an internationally diversified
"hard asset" company principally focused on the development,
ownership and operation of entertainment and real property assets
in the United States, Australia, and New Zealand.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Steel Partners Unit Defends 1,160 Claims
---------------------------------------------------------
A subsidiary of Steel Partners Holdings L.P., has been named
defendant in 1,160 alleged asbestos-related toxic-tort claims,
according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2012.

BNS Sub has been named as a defendant in 1,160 and 1,020 alleged
asbestos-related toxic-tort claims as of December 31, 2012 and
December 31, 2011, respectively. The claims were filed over a
period beginning 1994 through June 30, 2012. In many cases these
claims involved more than 100 defendants. Of the claims filed, 926
and 694 were dismissed, settled or granted summary judgment and
closed as of December 31, 2012 and 2011, respectively. Of the
claims settled, the average settlement was less than $3. There
remained 234 and 326 pending asbestos claims as of December 31,
2012 and December 31, 2011, respectively. There can be no
assurance that the number of future claims and the related costs
of defense, settlements or judgments will be consistent with the
experience to date of existing claims.

BNS Sub has insurance policies covering asbestos-related claims
for years beginning 1974 through 1988 with estimated aggregate
coverage limits of $183,000, with $2,282 and $1,660 at December
31, 2012 and 2011, respectively, in estimated remaining self
insurance retention (deductible). There is secondary evidence of
coverage from 1970 to 1973 although there is no assurance that the
insurers will recognize that the coverage was in place. Policies
issued for BNS Sub beginning in 1989 contained exclusions related
to asbestos. Under certain circumstances, some of the settled
claims may be reopened. Also, there may be a significant delay in
receipt of notification by BNS Sub of the entry of a dismissal or
settlement of a claim or the filing of a new claim. BNS Sub
believes it has significant defenses to any liability for toxic-
tort claims on the merits. None of these toxic-tort claims have
gone to trial and, therefore, there can be no assurance that these
defenses will prevail. In addition, there can be no assurance that
the number of future claims and the related costs of defense,
settlements or judgments will be consistent with the experience to
date of existing claims; and, that BNS Sub will not need to
increase significantly its estimated liability for the costs to
settle these claims to an amount that could have a material effect
on the consolidated financial statements.

BNS Sub annually receives retroactive billings or credits from its
insurance carriers for any increase or decrease in claims accruals
as claims are filed, settled or dismissed, or as estimates of the
ultimate settlement and defense costs for the then-existing claims
are revised. As of December 31, 2012 and December 31, 2011,
respectively, BNS Sub has accrued $1,020 and $635 relating to the
open and active claims against BNS Sub. This accrual represents
the Company's best estimate of the likely costs to defend against
or settle these claims by BNS Sub beyond the amounts accrued by
the insurance carriers and previously funded, through the
retroactive billings by BNS Sub. However, there can be no
assurance that BNS Sub will not need to take additional charges in
connection with the defense, settlement or judgment of these
existing claims or that the costs of future claims and the related
costs of defense, settlements or judgments will be consistent with
the experience to date relating to existing claims. These claims
are now being managed by the Liquidating Trust formed by BNS.

Steel Partners Holdings L.P. is a global diversified holding
company that engages in multiple businesses through consolidated
subsidiaries, associated companies and other interests.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Met-Pro Corp. Had 157 Pending Cases at Jan. 31
---------------------------------------------------------------
Met-Pro Corporation had 157 pending asbestos-related cases as of
January 31, 2013, according to the Company's Form 10-K filing with
the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year
ended January 31, 2013.

Beginning in 2002, the Company began to be named in asbestos-
related lawsuits filed against a large number of industrial
companies including, in particular, those in the pump and fluid
handling industries. In management's opinion, the complaints
typically have been vague, general and speculative, alleging that
the Company, along with the numerous other defendants, sold
unidentified asbestos-containing products and engaged in other
related actions which caused injuries (including death) and loss
to the plaintiffs.  Counsel has advised that more recent cases
typically allege more serious claims of mesothelioma.  The
Company's insurers have hired attorneys who, together with the
Company, are vigorously defending these cases.  Many cases have
been dismissed after the plaintiff fails to produce evidence of
exposure to the Company's products.  In those cases where evidence
has been produced, the Company's experience has been that the
exposure levels are low and the Company's position has been that
its products were not a cause of death, injury or loss.  The
Company has been dismissed from or settled a large number of these
cases.  Cumulative settlement payments through January 31, 2013
for cases involving asbestos-related claims were $740,000, which
together with all legal fees other than corporate counsel
expenses, have been paid by the Company's insurers.  The average
cost per settled claim, excluding legal fees, was approximately
$25,000.

Based upon the most recent information available to the Company
regarding such claims, there were a total of 157 cases pending
against the Company as of January 31, 2013 (with Connecticut, New
York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia having the largest number of
cases), as compared with approximately 130 cases that were pending
as of March 22, 2012.  During the current fiscal year commencing
February 1, 2012 through January 31, 2013, 59 new cases were filed
against the Company, and the Company was dismissed from 33 cases
and settled four cases.  Most of the pending cases have not
advanced beyond the early stages of discovery, although a number
of cases are on schedules leading to, or are scheduled for trial.
The Company believes that its insurance coverage is adequate for
the cases currently pending against the Company and for the
foreseeable future, assuming a continuation of the current volume,
nature of cases and settlement amounts. However, the Company has
no control over the number and nature of cases that are filed
against it, nor as to the financial health of its insurers or
their position as to coverage.  The Company also presently
believes that none of the pending cases will have a material
adverse impact upon the Company's results of operations, liquidity
or financial condition.

At any given time, the Company is typically also party to a small
number of other legal proceedings arising in the ordinary course
of business.  Although the ultimate outcome of any legal matter
cannot be predicted with certainty, based upon the present
information, including the Company's assessment of the facts of
each particular claim as well as accruals, the Company believes
that no pending proceeding will have a material adverse impact
upon the Company's results of operations, liquidity, or financial
condition.

Met-Pro Corporation manufactures and sells product recovery and
pollution control equipment for purification of air and liquids,
fluid handling equipment for corrosive, abrasive and high
temperature liquids, and filtration and purification products.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: N.C. Ct. Denies Bid to Dismiss Ex-Worker's Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
In an order dated April 1, 2013, the Hon. W. Earl Britt of the
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina,
Western Division, denied a defendant's motion to dismiss a
personal injury action alleging exposure to asbestos during
occupation after finding that the factual allegations contained in
the Plaintiffs' complaint sufficiently meet the applicable legal
standards.

The case is ROBERT WESLEY MILLER and JANE E. MILLER, Plaintiffs,
v. 3M COMPANY a/k/a Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing Company, et
al., Defendants, No. 5:12-CV-00620-BR (E.D.N.C.).  A full-text
copy of Judge Britt's Decision is available at http://is.gd/YY1MuM
from Leagle.com.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: N.Y. Ct. Denies Bid to Dismiss Ex-Worker's Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Sherry Klein Heitler of the Supreme Court, New York County,
granted, in part, and denied, in part, the motion of defendant
National Grid Generation, LLC, f/k/a/ Long Island Power Authority
(LILCO) to dismiss an asbestos personal injury action filed by a
former electrician.  Judge Heitler granted the motion with respect
to the Plaintiffs' claim under Sec. 241(6) of the New York State
Labor Law but denied the motion with respect to the Plaintiffs'
other claims after finding that the affidavit of a former LILCO
employee sufficiently established evidence showing that LILCO
supervised and controlled the activities which are purported to
have caused the former electrician's injuries.

The case is JOHN E. CISLER and CAROL CISLER, Plaintiffs, v. A.O.
SMITH WATER PRODUCTS CO., et al., Defendants, Docket No.
190044/12, Motion Seq. No. 002 (N.Y.).  A full-text copy of Judge
Heitler's Decision and Order dated March 22, 2013, is available at
http://is.gd/nNsR7Ifrom Leagle.com.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Union Carbide's Summary Judgment Bid Denied
------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Sherry Klein Heitler of the Supreme Court, New York County,
in a March 22, 2013 decision and order, denied defendant Union
Carbide Corporation's motion for summary judgment dismissing an
action filed by Mila Macek who alleged that his malignant pleural
mesothelioma was caused by his exposure to various products during
his occupation, including products that contained raw chrysotile
asbestos fibers known as "Calidria" sold by UCC.

In denying the motion for summary judgment, Judge Heitler found
that evidence showed that UCC may have withheld highly relevant
information from its customers regarding Calidria's health
effects.  Further, Judge Heitler noted that there is also evidence
that UCC may have minimized the health concerns to its customers
and neglected to provide them with specific information regarding
its own product.  Based on the records presented in Court, Judge
Heitler said it cannot determine as a matter of law that the bulk
supplier, sophisticated intermediary, or knowledgeable user
doctrines relieves UCC of liability.  The submissions, the Court
said, raise too many material questions regarding the adequacy of
UCC's warnings to its customers.

The case is NICHOLAS G. MACEK as Executor for the Estate of MILA
MACEK and WIJNADA DEROO MACEK Plaintiff, v. CBS CORPORATION, et
al., Defendants, Docket No. 190085/11, Motion Seq. No. 05 (N.Y.).
A full-text copy of Judge Heitler's Decision is available at
http://is.gd/RoAHy4from Leagle.com.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Calif. App. Court Affirms Ruling for Crane
-----------------------------------------------------------
The Court of Appeals of California, Second District, Division
Seven, affirmed a lower court's judgment entered in favor of
defendant John Crane Inc. in an asbestos personal injury action.

The issue arises from two actions.  Plaintiffs Karen Jones,
Melanie Koskie, Lori Jones and John D. Jones, appealed from the
judgment taking the position that the issues decided by the
federal court in a first action were not identical to the issues
presented to the trial court in the second action.  The Defendant
maintained that the federal court's dismissal with prejudice of
the first action for personal injury and loss of consortium is res
judicata as to those matters necessary for the surviving spouse
and the children to state causes of action for wrongful death.

In affirming the lower court's decision, the Court of Appeals
found that, as to the element of identity of causes of action and
issues, except for the few additions due to the death of John
Lewis, the text of the causes of action for negligence and for
strict liability in the two actions was identical, as were the
issues presented in each cause of action.

The Court of Appeals added that where the judgment was adverse to
the decedent, the heirs are collaterally estopped from
relitigating the issue.  The wrongful death action is inextricably
linked to the determination of the deceased's rights in the prior
action and the loss the Defendants suffer arises by virtue of the
injury caused to the deceased, the Court of Appeals said.  It
would be anomalous to deny recovery to the deceased but to award
damages to his heirs based on the same set of facts and legal
issues, the Court of Appeals added.  Accordingly, the Jones adult
children are collaterally estopped from alleging a statutory cause
of action for wrongful death.

The case is KAREN JONES et al., Plaintiffs and Appellants, v. JOHN
CRANE INC., Defendant and Respondent, No. B238445 (Calif.).  A
full-text copy of the Court of Appeals' Decision dated March 27,
2013, is available at http://is.gd/2I7Hynfrom Leagle.com.

The Plaintiffs are represented by:

         SIMON GREENSTONE PANATIER BARTLETT
         301 East Ocean Blvd., Suite 1950
         Long Beach, CA 90802
         Tel: (562) 590-3400
         Fax: (562) 590-3412

The Defendant is represented by:

         Philip S. Ward, Esq.
         HASSARD BONNINGTON
         Two Embarcadero Center, Suite 1800
         San Francisco, CA 94111
         Tel: (415) 288-9800
         Fax: (415) 288-9801
         Email: psw@hassard.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Denial of Bid to Junk Ex-Worker's Suit Affirmed
----------------------------------------------------------------
A three-judge panel of the Court of Appeals of Ohio, Eighth
District, Cuyahoga County, denied Norfolk Southern Railway
Company's appeal of a trial court's denial of its motion to
administratively dismiss the complaint of Cleo Renfrow, as
personal representative of the estate of Gerald B. Renfrow.

Mrs. Renfrow, as representative of Mr. Renfrow who was a veteran
airman who later worked for Norfolk Southern as brakeman from 1968
to 1992, filed a lawsuit against Norfolk alleging asbestos-related
injuries under the Locomotive Boilers Inspection Act.  Mrs.
Renfrow alleged that during her husband's career with the
railroad, he was continuously exposed to various toxic substances,
including diesel exhaust and asbestos, in violation of federal
law.  She also alleged that the exposures to asbestos caused her
husband to develop lung cancer.

Norfolk Southern moved to administratively dismiss Mrs. Renfrow's
claims, alleging she had failed to comply with prima facie filing
requirements under a certain statute, which requires a smoker
bringing a tort action alleging an asbestos claim to provide
certain medical documentation before a prima facie claim may be
made.  The trial court denied the motion to administratively
dismiss finding that Mrs. Renfrow submitted evidence, "consisting
of Mr. Renfrow's hospital records, history of smoking, asbestos
exposure, and a report from a competent medical authority is
sufficient to establish a prima facie case.

The Court of Appeals noted that the trial court relied on its
decision in Sinnott v. Aqua-Chem, Inc., 8th Dist. No. 88062, 2008-
Ohio-3806, which addressed the issue of whether a veteran
utilizing his veterans' benefits for the treatment of his lung
cancer, without a traditional treating doctor, is bound by the
prima facie filing requirements.  The Court of Appeals related
that in Sinnott, as well as in the present case, the plaintiff's
treating physicians were employed by the Veterans Administration,
which the Court has found to limit plaintiff's ability to
experience the typical doctor-patient relationship that was
envisioned by the statute.  In Sinnott, the Court of Appeals
recognized that achieving the typical doctor-patient relationship
in the statute is not a bright line test, nor is it the sole
factor in the statute.  The fact that plaintiff was examined by a
doctor employed by the Veterans Administration does not diminish
the value of the evidence contained in the medical records, the
Court of Appeals said.

In addition, the Court of Appeals found that, in this case,
without utilizing magic words, the opinion of the testifying
doctor presented by Mrs. Renfrow, Dr. Laxminarayana Rao, supplied
the causal link between Mr. Renfrow's occupational exposure to
asbestos dust, diesel fumes, and exhaust and him developing lung
cancer and eventually dying.  Dr. Rao opined that Mr. Renfrow's
exposure to these known carcinogens, acted synergistically with
his cigarette smoking to greatly increase the risk of developing
lung cancer beyond what would have been expected from only smoking
or only being exposed to asbestos dust.  Consequently, because Dr.
Rao's report provided the crucial causal link between Mr.
Renfrow's occupational exposure to asbestos dust, diesel fumes and
exhaust and him developing lung cancer, the trial court was on
firm ground in concluding that Mrs. Renfrow had established a
prima facie case, the Court of Appeals concluded.

The case is CLEO J. RENFROW, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE, v. NORFOLK
SOUTHERN RAILWAY COMPANY, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT, No. 98715 (Ohio).
A full-text copy of the Court of Appeals' Opinion dated March 28,
2013, is available at http://is.gd/KWy2nlfrom Leagle.com.

The Appellant is represented by:

         David A. Damico, Esq.
         Ira L. Podheiser, Esq.
         BURNS WHITE, L.L.C.
         Four Northshore Center
         106 Isabella Street
         Pittsburgh, PA 15212
         Tel: (412) 995-3000
         Fax: (412) 995-3300
         Email: dadamico@burnswhite.com
                ilpodheiser@burnswhite.com

The Appellee is represented by:

         Michael L. Torcello, Esq.
         Christopher M. Murphy, Esq.
         DORAN & MURPHY, P.L.L.C.
         1234 Delaware Avenue
         Buffalo, NY 14209
         Email: mtorcello@doranandmurphy.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: NY Ct. Consolidates 3 PI Suits for Joint Trial
---------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Barbara Jafe of the Supreme Court, New York County, entered
a decision and order dated March 26, 2013, granting a motion to
consolidate for joint trial three cases alleging personal injuries
arising from exposure to asbestos and denying the motion to
consolidate a fourth case with the three other cases.

Judge Jafe found that consolidation is warranted in the three
cases as there is no opposition to the consolidation of the three
cases, there is only one and the same defendant remaining in each
case, each plaintiff died of lung cancer and worked in
construction at similar worksites and was exposed to the same
materials during overlapping periods of time between the 1940s and
1990s.

For the fourth case, Judge Jafe found that the Plaintiff in the
fourth case, while allegedly exposed while he worked in the Coast
Guard, assert that he has no claims related to the exposure
against the remaining defendant in his case.  Thus, the issue of
the applicability of federal law is not a factor here, Judge Jafe
said.  Moreover, the Plaintiff in the fourth case is the only
plaintiff who worked as an auto mechanic and in auto garages, he
was exposed only to asbestos in brakes and clutches, and the four
remaining defendants in his case are not defendants in any of the
other cases. Thus, plaintiffs have not shown that his case has
issues in common with the other plaintiffs such that consolidation
is warranted, Judge Jafe concluded.

The three cases for consolidation are (1) Group One -- (a) John
Byrnes, Index No. 119504/02, (b) Horace Leo Cayen, Index No.
123161/02, and (c) Nicholas Latzer, Index No. 125211/02; (2) Group
Two -- (a) Albert Dell'Arciprete, Index No. 121607/02, and (b)
Andrew Kornacki, Index No. 121910/02; and (3) Group Three -- (a)
Robert Baiocco, Index No. 114562/02, and (b) Ralph Blank, Index
No. 125260/02.  The fourth case is the Roger Balducci action,
Index No. 119783/02, to be tried separately.

The case is IN RE: NEW YORK CITY ASBESTOS LITIGATION, relating to:
SHARON BAIOCCO, Individually and as Executrix for the Estate of
ROBERT A. BAIOCCO, SR., et al., Plaintiffs, v. A.C. & S., INC., et
al., Defendants, Docket No. 114562/02, Motion Seq. No. 1, (N.Y.).
A full-text copy of Judge Jafe's Decision is available at
http://is.gd/5qX2wQfrom Leagle.com.

The Plaintiffs are represented by:

         Kyle A. Shamberg, Esq.
         WEITZ & LUXENBERG, P.C.
         700 Broadway, New York, NY 10003
         Tel: (212) 558-5500

Defendant Mack Trucks, Inc., is represented by:

         Lance Perez, Esq.
         MAIMONE & ASSOCS. PLLC
         170 Old Country Rd., Ste. 609
         Mineola, NY 11501
         Tel: (516) 390-9595

Defendant Puget Sound is represented by:

         Jessica Mullery, Esq.
         WILSON ELSER MOSKOWITZ EDELMAN & DICKEN LLP
         150 E. 42nd St.
         New York, NY 10017-5693
         Tel: (212) 915-5166
         Fax: (212) 490-3038
         Email: jessica.mullery@wilsonelser.com

The Defendants are represented by:

         Stephen Novakidis, Esq.
         SEDGWICK, LLP
         Three Gateway Ctr., 12th Fl.
         Newark, NJ 07102
         Tel: (973) 242-0002
         Email: Stephen.novakidis@sedgwicklaw.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Inconsistency in Testimony Warrants Jury Trial
---------------------------------------------------------------
In a decision and order dated March 27, 2013, Judge Sherry Klein
Heitler of the Supreme Court, New York County, denied defendant
Kohler Co.'s motion for summary judgment dismissing an asbestos-
related personal injury action filed by a former repairman who
alleged exposure to asbestos-containing boilers of Kohler.

In denying the motion for summary judgment, Judge Heitler noted
that Kohler did not dispute that its boilers contained asbestos
during the relevant time period of the former repairman's
occupation.  The Defendant, instead, cites to portions of the
former repairman's testimony as speculative and inconsistent.
This discrepancy, according to Judge Heitler, illustrates that
there are issues of fact that must be determined by a jury.  What
is important is that the former repairman's testimony sufficiently
identifies the Defendant as a source of his asbestos exposure.

The case is CLAUDE WILKINSON, Plaintiff, v. AIR & LIQUID SYSTEMS
CORP., et al., Defendant(s), Docket No. 190091/12, Motion Seq. 002
(N.Y.).  A full-text copy of Judge Heitler's Decision is available
at http://is.gd/mb4WU2from Leagle.com.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ct. Denies Bid to Remand Ex-Navy Worker's Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Hon. Barry Ted Moskowitz, Chief District Judge for the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of California, refused to
remand to state court two actions alleging occupational exposure
to asbestos resulting to malignant mesothelioma after finding that
the defendants have alleged a colorable federal defense.

The two actions, which have been consolidated, allege that
Plaintiff Donald Willis suffers from malignant mesothelioma as a
result of his exposure to asbestos while working for the U.S.
Navy.  The Plaintiffs further allege that the Defendants
manufactured and supplied products containing asbestos on the Navy
ships on which Mr. Willis worked.  Plaintiffs brought the two
actions in state court, but both were timely removed by Defendants
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1442(a)(1), under which an action may
be removed to federal court if brought against "[t]he United
States or any agency thereof or any officer (or any person acting
under that officer) . . . for or relating to any act under color
of such office. . ."

The case is DONALD WILLIS and VIOLA WILLIS, Plaintiffs, v. BUFFALO
PUMPS, INC., et al. Defendants, Case No. 12cv744-BTM-DHB (S.D.
Calif.).  A full-text copy of Judge Moskowitz's Decision dated
March 29, 2013, is available at http://is.gd/fY1f2sfrom
Leagle.com.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ill. EPA Wants Demolition of Chicago Bldg Halted
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The Associated Press reports that the Illinois Environmental
Protection Agency is seeking a court order to stop demolition of a
Chicago building over asbestos contamination concerns.  The agency
said April 1 that it's asked Attorney General Lisa Madigan to seek
an injunction to prevent Zidan Management Group and Dubai
Construction from tearing down a 9-story building on the city's
North Side.

The EPA says inspectors from its agency and the city discovered
the companies did not follow proper asbestos-handling procedures,
leading to unsafe levels of the pollutant in the building.  EPA
officials also say the companies failed to notify the agency of
the renovation and didn't properly inspect for asbestos.  The
environmental agency wants a licensed, outside contractor to
develop a plan to address the contamination.

The 1923 building formerly housed a mental hospital and hotel.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ernie Bridge's Lawyers Call for Quick Action
-------------------------------------------------------------
ABC News (Australia) reports that lawyers for the late Indigenous
politician Ernie Bridge say his case shows why it is important
people suffering asbestos-related diseases act quickly.

WA's first Aboriginal MP passed away in Perth at the weekend, at
the age of 76.  Just weeks ago he had launched a civil action,
alleging his illness was caused by exposure to asbestos while
overseeing withdrawal of government services from Wittenoom in the
late 1980s.  His lawyer Simon Millman has told the ABC Mr Bridge's
family will be able to proceed with the claim, despite his death.

"If people are experiencing the symptoms of asbestos-related
diseases, they should seek advice on an urgent basis," he said.

"Then at least the plaintiff will have the peace of mind knowing
that his or loved ones can proceed with the claim even in the
event that the worst should happen."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: NSW Unveils Plan to Curb Fibro-Related Deaths
--------------------------------------------------------------
News.com.au reports that a plan to prevent more people from being
exposed to asbestos has been unveiled by the New South Wales
(Australia) government in a bid to curb the growing death toll.

Asbestos-related diseases claimed the lives of 201 people across
the state in 2011 and this number is expected to rise each year
until at least 2018.

"Tragically, the number of people with asbestos-related diseases
may increase in the next few years, as there is often a delay of
up to 40 years between exposure and the onset of disease," NSW
Finance Minister Greg Pearce said on Wednesday.

The fatalities are a result of people in the past engaging in
unsafe practices when working with asbestos, which was used in the
manufacture of building and insulation materials.  When disturbed,
asbestos releases fine particles of dust containing fibres, which
if inhaled cause asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.

"The level of asbestos-related illness in NSW is unacceptably high
and this plan is a call to government, industry and the wider
community to responsibly manage asbestos," Mr Pearce said.

The Asbestos Plan has four priority areas including research, risk
communication, prevention and coordination.  Mr Pearce said it
aimed to reduce the incidence of asbestos-related diseases by
ensuring its safe management and increasing awareness of the
dangers associated with the cancer-causing substance.

"Tackling asbestos disease rates will be challenging but this plan
will help ensure current practices for working with and managing
asbestos reduce the risk of asbestos-related disease," he said in
a statement.

The plan was developed by the Heads of Asbestos Coordination
Authorities (HACA) in consultation with government agencies, local
councils, industry and worker representatives and disease research
groups.  Mr Pearce said the HACA was established in response to
the NSW Ombudsman recommendations for significant asbestos reform
in NSW.

"This plan is another example of the NSW government's commitment
to reducing asbestos-related diseases and we will continue to work
with federal bodies to properly manage asbestos," he said.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Closing of Factories in Bhojpur Ruled Out
----------------------------------------------------------
The Times of India reports that deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar
Modi on April 2 ruled out closure of asbestos factories in Bhojpur
district.  Replying to a starred question of Sanjay Singh Tiger of
BJP, Modi said the two factories at Gidha and Bihiya in Bhojpur
were running with the approval of the pollution control board and
after getting clearance under the Pollution Control Act of 1986.

Modi said the factories would not be closed. According to him,
even the Supreme Court while deciding a case in 2004 had observed
that there was no authentic study to suggest pollution from
asbestos factories causing cancer.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Teachers Union in Liverpool Demand Action
----------------------------------------------------------
Rory MacKinnon, writing for Morning Star, reports that children
and teachers are still at risk of developing cancer due to
asbestos-riddled classrooms, trade unionists in Liverpool heard
April 2.

The National Union of Teachers demanded urgent action after the
Department for Education told MPs that schools had a "duty to
manage" the deadly cladding material -- but not to remove it.
Officials told the Commons education committee in March that the
government's policy was to "contain and actively manage asbestos
and for its removal to be carried out correctly and safely (for
example when buildings are demolished or refurbished, or when
damage means that asbestos is no longer safely contained)."

But teachers speaking at the union's national conference in
Liverpool voiced outrage.  Newcastle upon Tyne delegate Ian
Grayson stressed the issue was "literally a matter of life and
death," as three-quarters of all schools still had asbestos
cladding onsite.

Vibrations can release floating asbestos fibres into the air where
they are inhaled and became trapped in people's lungs -- and there
was no such thing as managing asbestos in a classroom full of
active children, he said.

"They can knock the wall, bang it. Goodness knows how many drawing
pins we put in it. The only safe way to manage asbestos is to
remove it."

General secretary Christine Blower said she was shocked that
asbestos exposure was still an issue in 2013 -- four decades after
the public learned that asbestos could kill.  Innocent people were
dying every year while the government failed to act, she said.

"Surely the lives of pupils and school staff are more important
than the cost of asbestos removal from our schools?"

More than 253 teachers in Britain have died from mesothelioma
since 1980, according to Health and Safety Executive records.

A cancer of the lungs exclusively linked with asbestos exposure,
the condition kills more than 2,000 people a year in Britain while
more than 1,600 survivors remain on sickness benefits.  Asbestos
was used throughout Britain as a fireproof and insulating cladding
from the '50s to mid-'80s despite an outcry over public health
risks beginning in the '70s.  White or chrysotile asbestos was
still in use as recently as 1999 when all forms were finally
banned in Britain.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Israel's High Court Says Firm Liable on Cleanup
----------------------------------------------------------------
Sharon Udasin, writing for The Jerusalem Post, reports that ruling
against the appeal of a former asbestos production firm, the High
Court of Justice in Israel decided April 2 that the Etanit company
will remain responsible for half the cost of cleanup of the
dangerous chemical in the Western Galilee.

"This is a precedent-setting ruling and groundbreaking toward
everything that touches upon responsibility of the manufacturer,"
said Amit Bracha, executive director of Adam Teva V'Din (Israel
Union for Environmental Defense).

"There is no doubt that the High Court's decision serves the
public interest."

Soon after the Asbestos Hazards Prevention Law passed in its
second and third Knesset readings in April 2011, the Environmental
Protection Ministry began implementing a plan for asbestos cleanup
in the Western Galilee. The ministry's initial budget was NIS 20
million, but the office estimated at the time that the project
would demand a total of NIS 300m. throughout its five-year
duration.

The Etanit company, whose factory produced asbestos building
products on the northern Nahariya coast from 1953 through 1997,
would be charged with bearing half the cost of the cleanup -- up
to the sum of NIS 150m., according to the ministry.

The new law banned the use of any type of asbestos while also
phasing out the existing presence of asbestos inside industrial
and public buildings within 10 years time, and inside IDF
facilities within seven years, ministry information said.

For the Western Galilee cleanup project, the program would involve
evacuating asbestos from public spaces, and later from private
ones.  The asbestos industrial waste that originated from the
Etanit factory was scattered over approximately 150,000 cubic
meters of land, with some also intermixed in the region's roads
and paths, ministry data reported. Now crumbling with old age,
these paths were exposing asbestos to the surface and the air.
About a year after the law passed and the evacuation project
began, thenenvironmental protection minister Gilad Erdan visited
the cleanup site and deemed the asbestos removal so important that
he decided to double the ministry's contribution to NIS 40m.

"Every day that we advance the project, a human life is saved,"
Erdan said in a statement in April 2012. "We doubled the budget
designated for this year in order to double the pace of executing
the hazard's removal."

At the time, Erdan had also requested that Etanit co-owner Mickey
Federman -- who also owns the Dan hotel chain -- remove his
petition to the High Court and abide by the asbestos law, but the
petition remained in place.  In the latest ruling against Etanit,
the judges also decided that the company must reimburse Adam Teva
V'Din NIS 70,000 for its legal expenses in fighting against the
appeal, the environmental advocacy group said. The more than 50-
page ruling deems the manufacturer responsible for dealing with
the cleanup and justifies the right to impose the financial burden
on the firm, according to Adam Teva V'Din. Referring to the unjust
danger placed upon vulnerable citizens through asbestos exposure,
the ruling calls the scattered chemical a "ticking health bomb."

Keren Halperin, director of Adam Teva V'Din's legal department,
welcomed the decision of the court.

"After extended action that began in creating awareness of the
asbestos problem in the Western Galilee and continued with the
local struggles and with the promotion of comprehensive
legislation to remove asbestos, [this decision will] allow
residents and visitors of the Western Galilee to enjoy a healthy
and fitting environment that does not endanger their health on a
daily basis," Halperin said.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: ADAO Chief Comments on U.S. Fibro Importation
--------------------------------------------------------------
Safety.BLR.com reports that Linda Reinstein, president of the
Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO), says the United
States continues to endanger public health by importing asbestos,
a known carcinogen.

Reinstein says, "I am especially concerned about workers exposed
to asbestos during renovations, construction, and natural
disasters like Hurricane Sandy." She added that since 2003,
asbestos-related diseases have claimed more than 100,000 lives,
including that of her husband. The ADAO cites statistics that say
construction workers are 11 times more likely to develop the lung
disease mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure than other workers.

The ADAO praised the U.S. Senate for passing a resolution
recognizing the first week of April as National Asbestos Awareness
Week. The group wants Congress to urge the surgeon general to warn
and educate people about asbestos exposure. "Congress must
prioritize legislative action to ban asbestos," the ADAO said.

The World Health Organization estimates that 107,000 workers
around the world die each year of an asbestos-related disease.
That translates to 300 deaths per day.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: April 1-7 Declared as Asbestos Awareness Week
--------------------------------------------------------------
Nancy Meredith, writing for MesotheliomaHelp.net, reports that for
the seventh year in a row, Senator Baucus of Montana proposed
legislation designating the first week of April for special focus
on the prevalence of asbestos-related disease. The U.S. Senate
unanimously passed the resolution and has designated the week of
April 1-7 as National Asbestos Awareness Week. Baucus represents
the residents of Montana where nearly 300 people died in Libby
from mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases.

Libby, Montana is the site of the W.R. Grace mine and mill that
shut down in 1990 and is blamed for widespread contamination from
asbestos exposure.  Asbestos is a known carcinogen and is proven
to cause lung cancer, asbestosis and mesothelioma, a serious
cancer caused by breathing in the asbestos fibers that then become
lodged in the thin membrane that lines and encases the lungs.

"We can never forget the suffering people in Libby have faced in
the name of corporate greed. Asbestos Awareness Week is just one
more way we can keep the folks in Lincoln County and people with
asbestos-related disease everywhere in our thoughts and prayers,"
said Baucus in a press release announcing the weeklong awareness
resolution.

Senate resolution 66 urges the Surgeon General to warn and educate
people about the public health issue of asbestos exposure, which
may be hazardous to their health.  The resolution cites the facts
that asbestos is a known cause of occupational cancer; thousands
of workers in the U.S. face significant asbestos exposure; and a
significant percentage of all asbestos-related disease victims
were exposed to asbestos on naval ships and in shipyards.

"We must do everything we can to help folks in Libby while
preventing a similar tragedy in the future," added Senator Tester,
co-sponsor of the resolution.  "Max and I will keep fighting for
Libby and raising awareness of the dangers of asbestos to make
Montana a safe, healthy place to live and work."

Baucus was instrumental in urging the EPA to declare its first
ever public health emergency in Libby, Montana. The declaration
requires the federal government to offer screenings and health
care for Libby residents as well as authorizing cleanup work in
homes and other structures.

The resolution points out that asbestos-related diseases can take
10 to 50 years to present themselves, and the expected survival of
people diagnosed with mesothelioma varies from 6 to 24 months.
Most often diagnoses are not made until symptoms appear and the
disease has progressed to an advanced stage leaving the patient
with life-threatening complications. The resolution also notes
that generally, little is known about late-stage treatment of
asbestos-related diseases, and there is no cure for such diseases.

About 3,000 new cases of mesothelioma are diagnosed each year in
the United States.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ohio Power Removes Suit to W.Va. Federal Court
---------------------------------------------------------------
Andrea Lannom, writing for The State Journal (W.Va.), reports that
a case that is part of the West Virginia asbestos litigation may
now be heard in federal court.  The action originally was filed in
Kanawha County Circuit Court by Barbara E. Amick and her husband,
Eldon Amick, against Allied Glove Corporation.

In the suit, Barbara Amick said she was diagnosed with
mesothelioma because of asbestos exposure from remodeling
performed at her home. Amick also said she was exposed to asbestos
her husband brought home from work.

Ohio Power Company, which filed a notice of removal March 29 in
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia,
was added as a defendant in the fifth amended complaint.  Court
documents note a motion to amend the complaint was filed to
reflect the death of Barbara Amick.

Before trial, many of the defendants -- except American Electric
Power and Vimasco -- settled claims or were dismissed.

Late last month, the circuit court entered an order enlarging the
time the Amicks had to effect service on the fifth amended
complaint on Ohio Power Company.  The order also continued the
matter with respect to the remaining defendants, Ohio Power,
American Electric Power and Vimasco, the notice of removal states.

In its notice of removal, Ohio Power said the only time Eldon
Amick could have brought home asbestos from work was from 1952-
1955, when he worked at the Ohio Power-owned Muskingum River and
Kyger Creek power plants.

Ohio Power said by June 1955, Eldon Amick no longer worked at an
industrial facility where he could have been exposed to asbestos.
However, the power company said it learned last month that Vimasco
did not begin manufacturing or selling any products that contained
asbestos until after 1955.  The power company said Vimasco has no
record reflecting sale of any product that may have contained
asbestos to any facility in 1955.

Ohio Power asked that Vimasco to be dismissed as a defendant.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Removed From 3 Alabama School Bldgs
----------------------------------------------------------
David Moore, writing for The Arab (Alabama) Tribune, reports that
special crews wearing hazmat suits came first week of April and
removed ceiling tiles containing asbestos from the Marshall County
Schools central office, Marshall Tech and Asbury Middle School.
School maintenance crews were expected to replace the tiles on
April 1, said Marshall County Board of Education President Mark
Rains.

The tiles that were removed from the central office and next door
at Marshall Tech came only from the hallways, said Ken Barnhorst
of Alabama Environmental, an asbestos removal contractor from
Tuscaloosa. He said ceiling tiles were removed at Asbury but he
did not immediately know if it was only from hallways.

Nathan Pee with Safety Environmental Laboratories and Consulting
in Birmingham was at the central office Wednesday morning to
conduct air testing after the removal. He did similar tests inside
Marshall Technical School and later at Asbury.  The tests were
done with pumps that suck air through filters, collecting
particles that were analyzed to ensure the buildings -- after the
tiles were disturbed during the removal -- were safe for
occupancy.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: WA Gov't Offers State Funeral for Bridge
---------------------------------------------------------
Tim Clarke, writing for Australian Associated Press, reports that
the family of pioneering politician Ernie Bridge has been offered
a state funeral by the West Australian government in recognition
of his contribution to the community.

Mr Bridge, the Kimberley MLA from 1980 to 2001, died in Perth from
asbestos-related diseases on Sunday, aged 76.  He was WA's first
Aboriginal MP and the first indigenous cabinet minister in any
Australian government.

As tributes flooded in for the father of four, country music
singer and former pastoralist, WA Premier Colin Barnett confirmed
Mr Bridge's family had been offered a state funeral.

"We have been in contact with Ernie Bridge's family and have made
an offer of assistance, including a state funeral or memorial
service, in recognition of the significant contribution Mr Bridge
made to the state," Mr Barnett said.

"Again I would like to extend my condolences on behalf of the
government for the family's loss.

"Ernie Bridge was a tremendously popular member of parliament who
served the people of the Kimberley with dedication and passion and
will be remembered with admiration for his significant involvement
in the progress of our state."

Having served as a minister under WA Labor leaders Brian Burke and
Peter Dowding, Mr Bridge received a medal of the Order of
Australia and was awarded a Centenary Medal for his commitment to
Aboriginal affairs. He was also known for promoting the idea of
piping water from the Kimberley to Perth via Kalgoorlie.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner
Mick Gooda said Mr Bridge was a man of integrity and courage.

"Ernie Bridge was not only a pioneering Aboriginal leader and
giant of a role model for younger Aboriginal and Torres Strait
Islander people, he was also a unique individual who could count
hundreds as friends," Commissioner Gooda said.

Earlier, it was confirmed Mr Bridge's family will be able to
continue legal action over the asbestos-related diseases that led
to his death on Sunday.

Weeks ago, Mr Bridge lodged a Supreme Court writ seeking damages
from parties including companies run by two of the nation's
richest women, Gina Rinehart's Hancock Prospecting and Angela
Bennett's Wright Prospecting.  He claimed he was exposed to
asbestos while overseeing the closure of mines and withdrawal of
government services from Wittenoom in the late 1980s.

Lawyer Simon Millman of Slater and Gordon confirmed the family
would be able to continue the legal fight because the claim had
been lodged while he was still alive.

"It is an important reminder that if people are experiencing
asbestos-related diseases it is imperative that legal proceedings
be started in their lifetime," Mr Millman told ABC radio.

"Mr Bridge appropriately commenced his proceedings and that will
now mean his estate, his family and loved ones are able to proceed
with the claim notwithstanding he has passed away."

The family have not yet indicated whether they will continue the
action.

Mr Millman said the legal process could continue, but the grieving
process should be given priority.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: State Stops El Portal Hotel Cleanup
----------------------------------------------------
Todd Wildermuth, writing for the Raton Range, reports that cleanup
of the debris of the El Portal Hotel in downtown Raton was halted
March 28 after the city informed state environmental regulators
that the hotel's remains from a November fire includes some debris
that contains asbestos levels that require special disposal.

With city officials believing there were only minimal amounts of
asbestos that did not trigger special state regulations, the
process of hauling the debris to the Raton landfill had begun just
a week earlier. El Portal owner Andy Holman of Pueblo, Colo.,
reached an agreement with the city in which he paid for the
contractor who was removing the debris and the city arranged with
state officials to allow the waste to be deposited into the soon-
to-be-closed municipal landfill.

Raton Interim City Manager Butch McGowen and city Public Works
Director Pat Vigil are scheduled to discuss the situation Tuesday
with New Mexico Environment Department Solid Waste Bureau Chief
Auralie Ashley-Marx, according to Chuck Akeley, the Solid Waste
Bureau's enforcement manager.

Akeley on April 1 told The Range that Raton's code enforcement
officer, David McCarty, notified Ashley-Marx last week of March
that he had learned test results from asbestos testing of El
Portal debris done in January did show certain materials contained
"regulated asbestos waste." Akeley explained that means some of
the tested materials contained more than 1 percent of asbestos and
the waste was in a less-than-stable condition, as would be
expected following a fire.

Holman on April 1 said he paid for the asbestos testing, which was
done by a private Albuquerque firm. He said when the company gave
him the results, it did not specifically tell him it had found any
levels of asbestos that required special disposal treatment as
established by the state. Holman said he told then-city manager
Pete Kampfer of the results, that everything was apparently OK for
the cleanup to eventually move forward. Holman said he was not
sure if he provided a hard copy of the testing results to the
city. He said he was not aware until the cleanup was stopped
Thursday that the testing had indicated the need for special
treatment of the waste.

In an interview with The Range last month, Ashley-Marx indicated
her bureau had been discussing with the city the El Portal waste
and the state's permission to deposit it in the municipal landfill
under the belief that testing had found no "regulated asbestos
waste" among the debris. Akeley said the Solid Waste Bureau has
been dealing with the city and not the property owner, but the
possibility exists that could change if necessary.

McGowen said the cleanup was "on hold," but referred any other
questions to McCarty, who had been working more directly on the
matter.  Monday (April 1) morning phone messages left by The Range
for McCarty and Kampfer were not returned before the newspaper
went to press Monday afternoon.

Akeley said he did not know how the test results' asbestos
information came to the city's attention last week. He said when
McCarty shared the information with Ashley-Marx -- who was out of
her office Monday and unavailable for comment -- the bureau chief
told McCarty the city would have to shut down the cleanup process
until she could discuss the matter Tuesday (April 2) with McGowen
and Vigil. Akeley said Ashley-Marx was informed that some of the
El Portal waste had already been taken to the landfill. He said
that went against a verbal agreement the bureau chief had made
with Kampfer in which the city was to inform the bureau before it
began removing the waste from the hotel site.

Akeley did not know what would be done with the waste already
dumped into the landfill, saying decisions such as that are made
on a "case-by-case basis." Raton's landfill is not licensed for
asbestos, so the city may be subject to some form of enforcement
action, Akeley said. Enforcement actions taken by the Solid Waste
Bureau can be an informal "notice of violation" that would require
the city to submit a written explanation of how it will come into
compliance with regulations regarding the issue at hand, or a
formal "administrative compliance order" that compels compliance
and may include a fine. What type of enforcement action, if any,
may be used, Akeley said, will not be determined "until all the
facts are in."

As to the bulk of the debris that remains in the North Third
Street block between Park and Clark avenues, Akeley said generally
speaking sites with "regulated" asbestos such as that should be
wetted, warning signs posted and public access restricted.

Asbestos, which was used years ago in some building materials,
contains microscopic particles that can become airborne when
materials are handled or moved, posing the threat that people
could inhale the particles, which can cause cancer, according to
Akeley.

"We've been working very closely with Raton," Akeley said of
discussions between the Solid Waste Bureau and the city. "We want
to see this debris disposed of properly. . . and that's the goal."

Holman said the inspection firm he hired found the "regulated
asbestos waste" in roofing materials and window putty among the
hotel debris. He said he thought the inspector had "nitpicked"
regarding the levels found in the window putty. He also said he
had asbestos testing done on the building in November 2009 and the
results were "negative" for any regulated asbestos levels.

Holman said the city has been cooperative in working with him on
planning the cleanup of the El Portal. He said he is now trying to
contact officials at the state Environment Department to discuss
the situation.

Holman said the cleanup must get done quickly since the landfill
is scheduled to close soon, adding that if too many obstacles
hinder the process he may just leave the debris where it is,
declare bankruptcy and leave the cleanup in the city's hands.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Optima Cambridge Fined GBP80,000 Over Fibro Risk
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Joshua Taylor, writing for the Burton Mail (U.K.), reports that a
company has been fined nearly GBP80,000 after workers were
potentially exposed to deadly asbestos dust during the renovation
of a former brewery building in Burton.

Optima Cambridge Ltd admitted seven breaches of health and safety
law and site foreman Dominik Jaslowski has been given a suspended
jail term.  The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) claimed the
company had 'put profit before safety' and said the Polish men
contracted to work at 107 Station Street now faced a 'very real
risk' of cancer due to asbestos exposure.

One worker was also diagnosed with Legionnaires' disease, a
serious lung infection, while working at the site. It is thought
the bacteria had festered in the building's stagnant water system.

Optima bought the Victorian-era 200,000 sq ft property in 2002,
and renovation work was carried out in two phases between 2009 and
2010.

Following complaints that building safety regulations were being
flouted, an investigation made following shocking discoveries:

     * Twenty-seven tonnes of asbestos-contaminated rubble were
found dumped in the basement in waste bags sealed with cling film;

     * This rubble was then bricked up in the basement using
breeze blocks instead of being disposed of safely;

     * Workers were sleeping at the construction site in makeshift
accommodation, they were inadequately trained and left
unsupervised at times;

     * Jaslowski, the foreman, had no site management
qualifications;

     * A report by an asbestos expert found 'very few precautions'
were in place to protect workers from inhaling the deadly dust.
Their face masks were described as 'inadequate';

     * The company had failed to assess the risk of Legionnaires'
disease to the men living and working at the site;

     * There was insufficient fencing around open lift shafts,
meaning a worker could easily have fallen through the floor;

     * Optima failed to provide suitable firefighting equipment,
including fire alarms.

The safety measures that did exist were described during a
sentencing hearing at Burton Magistrates' Court as 'ad hoc, Heath
Robinson protection'.

Simon Belfield, prosecuting, told the court: "The company failed
to manage the project correctly so as to ensure the safety of its
workers.

"Inhalation of airborne asbestos can lead to serious diseases in
later life, such as mesothelioma (cancer of the lung lining), and
there is a very real risk of this for the Polish sub-contractors
who were dealing with this material."

Mr Belfield said Optima had 'cut corners' and 'put profit before
safety'.  He also claimed Jaslowski's conduct as foreman 'fell
short of what was expected of him'. The court heard Jaslowski
ordered his men to carry 15 skips' worth of asbestos-laced rubble
to the basement, where it was bricked up.

Six men worked on the first phase of the project between November
2009 and January 2010. Eighteen men then worked on the second
phase during the autumn of 2010.

London-based Optima pleaded guilty to seven charges and was
ordered to pay GBP79,015 in fines and costs.  Jaslowski, of
Newham, London, a Polish national who has been in Britain since
2007, was given a three-month prison sentence, suspended for a
year. He was also ordered to pay GBP3,500 costs and complete 200
hours of unpaid community work. He admitted two charges of
'failing to plan, manage and monitor' the construction work under
the Health and Safety at Work Act.

Optima director Kamran Khazai told the court the work at 107
Station Street was a 'labour of love' and asked for leniency
because of his company's financial state. It ran at a loss of
GBP224,000 last year.

"We have suffered because of the presumption that all property
developers are evil. It is a question whether we will survive or
not," Mr Khazai said.

107 Station Street has previously been owned by brewing giants Ind
Coope and Allsopp's. It now contains office space and community
facilities.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: White Rock to Spend C$225K More on Sewer Fix
-------------------------------------------------------------
Sarah Massah, writing for Peace Arch News, reports that a project
to replace storm and sanitary sewers on Marine Drive is expected
to cost White Rock (in British Columbia, Canada) at least
C$225,000 more than initially anticipated.  And while council gave
unanimous support to spending up to C$250,000 more if necessary,
at least two of the politicians expressed concern -- questioning
not only the bump, but why the problems that triggered it,
including asbestos, weren't identified from the get-go.

"I think when you've got an engineer looking at the job, they
should go down there with a camera," Coun. Al Campbell said last
week of March, following an explanation of the "unforeseen" change
orders by Greg St. Louis, the city's director of engineering and
municipal operations.

"We have very sophisticated engineering, we can take video, we can
dig holes and we can go digging," Campbell said. "We do have money
as it happens in this particular case, but these are very, very
large numbers.

"And the word 'unforeseen' and not knowing we had asbestos pipe in
the ground, well, a video camera would have shown you that."

The project -- replacing the sewers from Bishop Road to High
Street -- had an original budget of C$1,734,000, of which
C$1,322,200 was approved last October.  According to St. Louis,
the change orders -- totaling more than C$225,000 -- "were beyond
what could be reasonably expected to be covered by standard
project contingency."  He told council a large portion of the
extra charges stemmed from the discovery of asbestos in the pipes
"and the proper measures to dispose of it and obtain the
material."

"That accounted for C$150,000 and was not estimated in the
contingency that we had planned," he said.

Going over the list of 13 change orders, and three contemplated
orders, Campbell questioned the validity of at least two --
referring to work done on Magdalen Road -- as road work had been
completed less than two years ago.

"Magdalen is brand new, built 18 months ago, what work at Magdalen
was needed? Replacing a sidewalk? Did the engineer miss it?" he
said. "There are a lot of items here that require a second look."

Coun. Larry Robinson echoed Campbell's sentiment, noting there
were five change orders that were more than C$25,000 each.  "Is
there a point with the change orders where we have a process that
kicks in so we can see a more detailed invoice when it exceeds a
certain amount?" he asked.

However, St. Louis noted all change orders are pre-examined
thoroughly.  "There is no dollar amount associated with that,
every change order is looked at individually with the same due
diligence, if it's C$1,000 or C$50,000," he said.

Council unanimously approved the change orders. Work is to be
completed by the end of the month.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Board OKs Fibro Removal at Connecticut School
--------------------------------------------------------------
Suzanne Carlson, writing for The Hartford (Conn.) Courant, reports
the board of education unanimously approved a grant application
April 1 to help pay for the removal of approximately 15,000 square
feet of asbestos floor tile from Barnes Elementary School.  If
approved by the town council and the State Department of
Education, the grant would allow the town to receive a 72%
reimbursement for construction costs from the state. Removal of
the asbestos tile is expected to cost $200,000, according to the
grant application prepared by Director of Facilities Albert S.
Costa.

The Barnes School at 305 May Road was constructed in 1957 with one
addition in 1965, Costa wrote.  Plans for the removal of the 50-
year old asbestos tiles, which are too old to continue to repair
and maintain properly, will include approximately 17 rooms in the
school totaling 15,000 square feet.

The asbestos building materials have been inspected and tested in
accordance with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and state
Department of Public Health requirements for asbestos in schools,
and construction will take place when school is not in session,
Costa wrote.

The project estimates include $5,000 for architectural design,
$3,000 for other professional fees and $192,000 for construction.
Of that amount, $144,000 is expected to be funded through the
state school construction grant program, while the remaining
$56,000 would be paid for through the board's capital reserve
account, said Superintendent Nathan D. Quesnel.

The town council was expected to authorize the grant application
April 2.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: EMSL Analytical Offers Fibro Testing
-----------------------------------------------------
According to NBC New York, state and federal inspectors have begun
an asbestos investigation at Nassau Coliseum in Long Island, New
York, home to the NHL's New York Islanders.

The inspection began after nearly 140 workers at the venue filed
claims reporting that coliseum managers failed to protect workers
from long term asbestos exposure. The claims combined will ask for
$1 billion in compensation.

Earlier this year, one worker collected samples from the coliseum
and sent them to three laboratories for testing. The white
substance was confirmed to be asbestos fibers, suggesting that the
venue's boiler room, loading dock, stairwells, and other places
accessible to the public, contain dangerous levels of asbestos
fibers, according to NBC New York.  Additionally, two long term
workers have contracted mesothelioma cancer, and they believe it
is from exposure to asbestos at the coliseum.

Inhalation of asbestos can be extremely hazardous, especially for
individuals working in an environment where asbestos is present.
Approximately 125 million people in the world are exposed to
asbestos at the workplace, according to the World Health
Organization (WHO).

"Airborne asbestos fibers travel into the body, attack soft
tissue, and can result in serious health conditions such as
mesothelioma, lung cancer, and asbestosis," says Ed Cahill, Vice
President of EMSL's Asbestos Division.  EMSL Analytical labs, in
the United States and Canada, are fully equipped and accredited to
test for the presence of asbestos in air, soil, water, and bulk
building materials. EMSL has been analyzing asbestos for employers
and homeowners for over 30 years to help prevent exposure to the
dangerous fibers."

For more information regarding EMSL's asbestos services, please
call 800-220-3675 or visit http://www.EMSL.com/or
http://www.AsbestosTestingLab.com/

EMSL Analytical is a full service testing company providing
quality lab services under the same private ownership since 1981.
Including the corporate lab facility in Cinnaminson, NJ, EMSL
Analytical operates over thirty laboratories nationwide in the US
and Canada. The company has an extensive list of accreditations
from leading organizations, as well as state and federal
regulating bodies.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Keswick Hospital Undergoes GBP1.25MM Upgrade
-------------------------------------------------------------
BBC News reports that beds in the inpatient area of a Cumbrian
hospital have been temporarily relocated to allow a GBP1.25
million upgrade to take place.  The move will allow contractors to
remove asbestos during the renovation of Keswick Community
Hospital.

Seven beds have been distributed between other community hospitals
in the area.  The minor injuries unit will continue to operate as
normal, and the work is due to be fully complete by September.

Stephen Prince, from Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust,
said, "Asbestos is present in many buildings and is not a risk
unless it is damaged.

"We knew from our asbestos register and building surveys that
there was some asbestos to be removed as part of the work.

"We have now decided to relocate the inpatient beds which will
allow a more effective programme to bring Keswick back into full
operation sooner."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Extent of Contamination at Dale Farm Revealed
--------------------------------------------------------------
Katharine Quarmby and Mark Townsend, writing for The (U.K.)
Observer, reports that the full extent of asbestos contamination
of the Dale Farm site in Essex has been revealed, fuelling concern
that the health of Travellers evicted from the plot and of nearby
residents has been harmed.

Two tonnes of waste, containing 13kg of asbestos cement, were
identified and removed from the site near Basildon during a recent
visit by environment health officers acting for the local council,
a freedom of information request has revealed. Basildon borough
council officials had earlier claimed that there was no "firm
evidence" that asbestos or other contaminants that could affect
health were on the site.

Travellers allege that the asbestos was released after the
destruction of buildings on the site, from which 86 families were
evicted in October 2011.

The FoI response reveals that at least six locations were
contaminated with asbestos and that 88 fragments of asbestos
cement were also collected by workers wearing protective suits. In
addition, 13kg of cement fragments were removed when a building
covered in asbestos sheeting was demolished.

Around 30 of the evicted families still live 100 yards away from
the site, with up to 100 local families potentially affected by
any contamination, according to Travellers' groups. Candy
Sheridan, co-chairwoman of the Gypsy Council, says the council's
clearance of the site after the mass evictions disturbed oil-based
contaminants in the soil, from its former use as a car-breaker's
yard, and asbestos.

Basildon council initially denied such accusations and said they
were "not substantiated". The Environment Agency report that had
been designed to settle the matter was due last autumn, but has
yet to appear.

Travellers are suspicious as to why the council decided to remove
asbestos after denying its existence.The council now says it has
cleared "minimal shards" and, in doing so, is not admitting
liability for any potential contamination.  The question of
liability for the cleanup remains a live one, coming days after
Travellers were billed GBP4.3m for the cost of evicting the 80
families.

David McPherson-Davis, the councillor for the area, said there was
considerable concern among residents over potential asbestos
contamination. He also wants to know why the Environment Agency
report has been delayed. "There must be sizeable pollution there,
and the EA and the government department it reports to is trying
to decide who put it there and who is responsible for cleaning it
up. Asbestos dust is potentially life-threatening. How far does
the dust travel?"

Nigel Smith, the Labour group leader of Basildon council, added:
"We are very concerned and quite angry that we have not seen this
report as promised.

"Local settled people, Travellers and children who even play on or
near the site are all entitled to know whether or not it is safe
for the local community."

Tony Ball, the council leader, said: "We were aware that the site
had been used previously as a scrapyard and there might have been
stuff buried illegally. Asbestos is a concern, even if there is no
danger to health, so to alleviate fears we removed it."

Sheridan, who has been carrying out a health audit of the
Travellers living on the roadside, says some already have lung
conditions and many of the children have breathing problems. "Over
98% of the children living roadside are using inhalers. Many are
on antibiotics for chest infections or have had upset stomachs. To
my knowledge this is not matched anywhere else in the country for
similar aged children."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Workers to Sue Nassau et al. Over Fibro Exposure
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Matthew Hogan, writing for the Garden City Patch, reports that
more than 100 workers from the Nassau Coliseum will be filing
lawsuits in the coming weeks regarding asbestos exposure while
working at the Uniondale arena.

Garden City Patch quoted a Newsday [paid link] report: "The
plaintiffs, including a widow of a heating and air conditioning
technician who filed a wrongful death action, will seek $500
million to $1 billion from 21 defendants including Nassau County,
the New York Islanders and facility manager SMG, said attorney
Joseph Dell, who is handling the cases."

Of the more than 100 plaintiffs, roughly 20 percent have been
diagnosed with "asbestos-related illnesses," Newsday reported.

According to Asbestos.com, "an exposure to asbestos can lead to a
variety of respiratory illnesses, including forms of mesothelioma,
lung cancer and asbestosis. There is no cure for mesothelioma."

According to Asbestos.com, the U.S. Department of Labor's
Occupational Safety and Health Administration last fall cited the
coliseum for 16 alleged violations of workplace safety standards.
OSHA's inspection stemmed from a coliseum employee complaint
earlier in the year.  OSHA's proposed fines of $88,000 for the
violations. According to its findings, the building's maintenance
workers and also its electricians were exposed to asbestos. Those
exposures occurred in in several areas of the facility.

Coliseum managers did not take necessary steps to make sure
workers could avoid the hazards, OSHA said.

Nassau Coliseum was built in 1972 at the height of the
construction industry's infatuation with asbestos, which was used
in both commercial and residential building as an insulator from
heat and fire.  The coliseum is home to the NHL's Islanders, who
four-time Stanley Cup Champions (1980-83). Since its opening, the
venue has hosted the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus
annually along with most every major concert/entertainment event
that has toured the country.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fire in Perth Bldg Likely to Expose Fibro
----------------------------------------------------------
PerthNow.com.au reported March 30 that a fire has caused AU$2
million damage to industrial units overnight.  A timber flooring
business and an adjoining unit in Sundercombe St, Osborne Park
were destroyed by the blaze, which started at 8:30 p.m.

Witnesses said they heard several large explosions before seeing
the single-storey building on fire.  Around 50 fire crews battled
the blaze for an hour before bringing it under control.

It's believed the roof of the building contained asbestos, posing
hazards to fire fighters.  A bulldozer would be needed to clear
debris March 30 before fire investigators can safely access the
building to determine the cause.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Denison County Caravan Park May Cost AU$1MM
------------------------------------------------------------
Tammy Mills, writing for The Border Mail (Australia), reports that
there will be no clean-up at the Mulwala caravan park worst-
affected by the tornado in March until asbestos has been removed
from the site.

The gates to Denison County Caravan Park remained locked March 29,
with signs attached warning people against entering the devastated
site.  More than 100 Mulwala residents in the last week of March
were told by an Environment Protection Authority spokesman that it
would take days before work began to remove asbestos from the
Denison County park.  The cleanup could not begin until that was
completed.

The spokesman said up to seven sites contained asbestos and the
force of the tornado had spread the dangerous contaminant across
the park.  Member for Albury Greg Aplin said it might cost up to
AU$1 million to clean up the park, where less than half of the
residents were insured.

Mr Aplin said he held fears for the Denison County park not only
because of the asbestos but also because rotting food had
attracted rats and mice.  "What worries me is that it's a health
hazard," he said.

Corowa Council mayor Fred Longmire wanted to know why the damage
in his "little shire" was not important enough to warrant a visit
from NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell as state and federal politicians
lobbied for an upgrade to disaster funding confirmed on Wednesday.

Mr Aplin said he continued to lobby NSW Police and Emergency
Services Minister, Michael Gallacher and federal Attorney-General,
Mark Dreyfus to upgrade disaster funding.  Both he and federal
member for Farrer Sussan Ley believed the damage at Mulwala
warranted the next tier of funding, under categories C and D.

Ms Ley inspected the damage at Mulwala on Thursday and were to
visit the Berrigan shire first week of April.  "C and D provides
more money for the clean-up and for the private operators of the
parks, the cost of the clean-up is enormous," she said.

"I'm hopeful we can trigger the next level."

However, an application for the next level of funding might be
complicated as the threshold was changed in December.  Mr Aplin
said categories C and D could previously be invoked by proving
there was widespread damage, but now, there was a requirement that
a third of businesses in the area have to be affected.  He said
the Mulwala area could apply for special consideration.

There is no word as to whether Mr O'Farrell will visit the region
and Mr Aplin, who spent more than five hours in the area the
morning after the tornado struck, asked whether a visit from his
party leader would make any difference.

"It doesn't solve the problem of the clean-up," he said.

But Cr Longmire said a visit from Mr O'Farrell would mean a lot to
the residents of his shire who had watched Victorian Premier Denis
Napthine at Bundalong.

"Are we not important enough for someone from the government to
have a look?" he said.

Cr Longmire, who faced a barrage of questions at a community
meeting last week, said the SES were the lead agency in the days
after the tornado hit.  He said the council did everything it
could in its response, but conceded there were "shortcomings" that
would be assessed soon.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Drywall Worker Wins $27 Million Jury Award
-----------------------------------------------------------
Silvia Hsieh, writing for Lawyers.com, reports that a drywall
worker who built houses during the California housing boom in the
1970s, when asbestos was used in virtually every type of building
material, has won a $27 million jury award for a cancer caused by
the toxic substance.

When he was still in high school in 1967, Michael Sutherland got a
job as a drywaller and continued working on residential and office
buildings in San Diego County for over 25 years. Sutherland would
rush from job to job, particularly during the housing boom in
California, barely noticing the clouds of dust around him.

"With all the trades working on top of each other trying to finish
one job and move on to the next, it was always dusty," he said.
"It wasn't until I became a lead maintenance mechanic at
University of California San Diego and attended a class on job
safety in 2003 that I learned that so many of the materials used
on the jobs back then contained asbestos."

That included stucco, joint compound, fire-rated drywall, roofing
materials and cement pipe.

In May 2012, Sutherland was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a
particularly deadly form of cancer caused by asbestos that attacks
the lung's lining.  He sued over 30 companies that made the
various products he was exposed to and several of them settled
with him.

By the time of the trial, only Highland Stucco and Lime Products
was left as a defendant. Sutherland's attorney, John Caron of
Worthington & Caron, argued that the stucco maker sold a dangerous
product and didn't warn about its dangers.

The company blamed the other companies and Sutherland himself. But
the jury disagreed, ordering the company to pay $26.6 million for
exposing Sutherland and the public to asbestos.

"I was surprised to learn at trial how much asbestos was in
stucco," Sutherland said. "Even though I rarely worked hands-on
with the stuff, I was exposed to dust when the bags were dumped
into large mixers and when we had to scrape off areas of over-
spray that came into the homes through windows and doors."

Sutherland, who can no longer work or enjoy his lifelong passion
of surfing, is dedicated to supporting mesothelioma research.

"With a little luck, I'll be around long enough to benefit from
the research they do with my support," he said.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: 4,500 Launceston Bldgs Hit by State Removal Plan
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Matt Maloney, writing for The Examiner (Australia), reports that
the Launceston City Council will have to remove asbestos from
almost 4500 buildings over the next two decades to satisfy
proposed state demands.

Council general manager Robert Dobrzynski said the state
government's proposed asbestos removal scheme at present flies
above nationally accepted standards and would result in "massive
and unaffordable financial imposts" placed on the council.

"This stems from the fact that we have some 4480 government
buildings of various types in the region worth AU$1.4 billion," Mr
Dobrzynski said.

"We believe the risks can be managed under the current national
standards.

"There is no proven benefit in taking unilateral action to exceed
those standards but we do know there would be a massive cost
imposition on our ratepayers."

He said it was unclear how the state government's asbestos removal
program would treat hundreds of kilometres of cement water pipe
containing asbestos.

Mr Dobrzynski feared, as the largest shareholder in the statewide
water authority, the council would wear replacement costs.

The state's asbestos removal strategy is being advised by a
committee with representatives from state departments, unions,
local government, Asbestos Free Tasmania, the Tasmanian Chamber of
Commerce and Industry and Workplace Standards Tasmania.

Workplace Standards general manager Roy Ormerod said councils need
to keep an up-to-date asbestos register, which would guide a
future repairs and replacement program.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Osawatomie's $3.2MM Bond Issue to Fix Schools
--------------------------------------------------------------
Allysha Newton, writing for The Miami County Republic, reports
that the Osawatomie school district has an aging building full of
small children, asbestos and leaks, three schools with a lack of
secure entrances and security measures and an elementary school
without a functional tornado shelter on its hands.  District
leaders hope to solve all of these problems under the umbrella of
a $3.2 million bond issue.

The issues

Aging Swenson Early Childhood Center is laden with myriad
maintenance problems, including a leaky roof and windows, failing
heating/cooling systems and a ceiling filled with asbestos, that
make keeping the school open costly. In addition, the recent Sandy
Hook tragedy alerted school officials to the potential dangers of
school shootings, which led them to reexamine their unsecure
entrances and security risks at each school.

The cost

The total renovations are expected to cost about $3.2 million. To
pay these bonds, voters will see an increase of 1.58 mills in
property taxes, which amounts to $8.63 a year for an $80,000 home
or $17.25 for a $100,000 home.

The schools

The current Swenson Early Childhood Center will close and move to
Trojan Elementary, where:

     -- A new addition for Swenson Center would operate as a
separate center with its own entrance, principal and staff.

     -- The new addition will serve as an above-ground tornado
shelter, as Trojan students typically evacuate to the library,
which has several skylights.

     -- The new Swenson Center will also have its own driveway and
parking area.

Trojan Elementary and Osawatomie Middle School and High School
would see several security upgrades, including:

     -- Front entrance access control systems and closed-caption
security cameras will be installed at all entrances.

     -- Classroom doors will lock from both the inside and the
outside of the room.

     -- The administrative offices at the middle school and high
school will be moved to the main entrances.

School officials say design work would begin immediately after the
April election, if the voters support the ballot measure. By
summer 2013, safety and security enhancement installation would
begin, and in fall 2013 construction on the new Swenson Center
would start. The new addition is estimated to be completed by fall
2014.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Transatlantic Re Disputes AIG's Claims Coverage
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bibeka Shrestha, writing for Law360, reports that Transatlantic
Reinsurance Co. slapped American International Group Inc. with a
lawsuit in New York state court March 28, claiming its reinsurance
obligations to AIG were extinguished when the insurer unilaterally
transferred its hefty asbestos liabilities to a Berkshire Hathaway
Co. unit.  The suit is the second that TransRe has brought against
AIG within a month.  In a complaint filed March 1 in the same
court by the same lawyers, TransRe challenged coverage of a nearly
$174 million asbestos settlement.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Redfield Middle School AHERA-Compliant
-------------------------------------------------------
Teresa Bennett, writing for White Hall Journal, reports that in an
article covering a recent meeting of the White Hall School Board
printed in a March 2013 edition, the Journal incorrectly quoted a
statement that was made by White Hall School Board Superintendent,
Dr. Larry Smith, when giving the Superintendents report during the
regular school board meeting which was held on March 12.

The journal initially quoted Dr. Smith as saying "The Redfield
Middle School Facilities are Asbestos free" when in fact, Dr.
Smith said that "An AHERA 3 year re-inspection report at Redfield
Middle School that was done to make sure we are in compliance with
that. As part of that, we did have some samples done on some
things that were questioned, and that was some roofing and debris
found in the basement and there was no asbestos in any of that."

In a phone interview on March 25, Dr. Smith told the Journal that
the District knows the building contains Asbestos from past
inspections. "And we have never denied that," he added.

"Any building prior to the 1970's probably has asbestos, Dr. Smith
explained. Any time you enter an older building and see the 9X9
floor tile, it probable has Asbestos." Smith also noted that every
district has a plan in place for that particular issue.

According to the inspection reports, EMTEC inspectors first
conducted an inspection on Feb. 25, however, school officials soon
found that there were some materials in question that had not been
included in the inspection. Those materials included some
shingles, from which Smith explains were removed from the building
somewhere around 1971-1973. "After removing the shingles they
disposed of them in the basement, for reasons I do not know," said
Smith, who was only 7 years old at the time.

Smith says they called EMTEC and requested that they come back to
inspect those materials as well. The inspectors returned on
Tuesday, March 5, during which they took samples. The results from
this inspection show that those materials, in fact were Asbestos
free.

The results from the testing simply show that since the last
inspection, nothing has been changed, broken in a state of
disrepair so it remains marked as being perfectly safe. He also
adds that while looking at what it would take to remove Asbestos,
Smith says that they have checked in to what it would take to
remove or Abate the Asbestos and have found that it is an
extremely serious and extensive process which can be very
expensive noting that for many years the district had a certified
inspector on payroll capable of removing small amounts of
Asbestos, however he recently retired.  Inspections have also been
conducted at the other schools in the WHSD, however results have
not yet been received. "We are never free or clear because of
Asbestos," Smith concluded.

The Journal will continue to report on the progress of the
inspections as it becomes available.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Norfolk Southern Fails to Dismiss Smoker's Claim
-----------------------------------------------------------------
According to a HarrisMartin.com article, the Ohio 8th District
Court of Appeals for Cuyahoga County in its March 28 decision
affirmed a lower court's decision to deny Norfolk Southern Railway
Co.'s attempt to dismiss an asbestos case, saying that the
plaintiff could rely on Veterans Administration medical records to
help fulfill part of the competent medical authority requirement
of filing an asbestos claim on behalf of a smoker.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: N.Y. Court Okays Consolidation of 8 Cases
----------------------------------------------------------
According to a HarrisMartin.com article, the New York Supreme
Court for New York County in a March 20 order, granted a plaintiff
motion to consolidate eight asbestos cases for trial, but opted to
split the cases into four trial groups instead of the proposed
two.  The Court rejected defense objections to the consolidation
plan, finding that there were common issues that predominated over
individual issues in several of the cases that favored
consolidation.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Baron and Budd Says US Still Importing Asbestos
----------------------------------------------------------------
On the heels of ADAO's Ninth International Asbestos Awareness
Conference, the country's largest independent non-profit asbestos
organization is now gearing up for National Asbestos Awareness
Week (NAAW), a week dedicated to asbestos awareness.  Passed this
year by unanimous vote under the leadership of Senator Max Baucus
(D-MT), this will be the ninth consecutive year the Senate has
passed a resolution to set aside the first week in April to bring
critical attention to the ongoing asbestos crisis in our country
and abroad. Over 50 nations have now passed a ban on asbestos. The
U.S., however, is not yet participating and continues importing
over 1,000 tons of chrysotile asbestos each year -- no longer from
Canada, but now from Brazil.

The ADAO's observation for the first week of April focuses on
"Asbestos: One Word. One World. One Week." The campaign, "7 Facts
for 7 Days," highlights a different speaker addressing a different
asbestos topic each day, beginning with a candlelight vigil to
honor those battling asbestos disease and in remembrance of those
lost. Distinguished speakers include Dr. Richard Leman (Asbestos:
What is It?) and Dr. Arthur L. Frank (Why is Asbestos Bad for My
Health?).

Russell Budd, founder and managing shareholder of Baron and Budd,
praised the creation of National Asbestos Awareness Week. "It is
hard to believe that most people are unaware of the dangers of
asbestos, but are still susceptible to exposure," Budd said.
"Because of this, there is a great need for a continued focus on
asbestos education and awareness. We still have so much work to
do."

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), "asbestos is a
known carcinogen and there is no safe level of exposure." At issue
today is the heated controversy over chrysotile, the form of white
asbestos accounting for 95 percent of asbestos used in the world
today. Pro-asbestos lobby groups argue chrysotile is less harmful
than blue or brown asbestos at controlled levels in the workplace.
The WHO statement refutes this view. An estimated 107,000 workers
die each year from asbestos cancers. As emerging statistics are
made available for the first time it appears that this number is
underreported in at least 33 countries including the United
States.  http://www.gban.net/2011/01/06/mesothelioma-cases-likely-
are-significantly-underreported-worldwide/

For the full NAAW agenda: "Asbestos: One Word. One World. One
Week," see http://www.asbestosdiseaseawareness.org/archives/19322

ADAO repeat platinum-level sponsor Baron and Budd, which has been
protecting the rights of mesothelioma patients for over three
decades, supports the independent open website called Mesothelioma
News, a helpful resource posted for the benefit of all individuals
who have been affected by asbestos exposure. Visit
http://www.mesotheliomanews.com

The national mesothelioma law firm of Baron & Budd, P.C. has a
more than 30-year history of "Protecting What's Right" for
asbestos sufferers and their families. As one of the first law
firms to successfully litigate an asbestos lawsuit, Baron & Budd
continues to actively represent veterans, industry workers and
others who are suffering as a result of exposure to asbestos.
Baron & Budd achieved the largest mesothelioma verdict ever in the
state of Texas, a $55 million verdict for an asbestos sufferer and
his family in El Paso, Texas. Contact Baron and Budd at
1.866.855.1229 for additional information on mesothelioma
treatments, mesothelioma cancer doctors and treatment centers and
mesothelioma attorneys.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Rivendell May Borrow $495K for Abatement Project
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Jon Wolper, writing for Valley News, reports that The Rivendell
Interstate School District's $9.5 million proposed budget didn't
face too much opposition March 27, as voters passed the spending
plan, 149-40.  By voice, they also approved borrowing $495,000,
for an asbestos abatement project, as well as $50,000 to be put in
a capital needs reserve fund.

The asbestos money, which only received a smattering of "no"
votes, will be used for a project that will take place
predominately in the Memorial Hall gym and the immediately
surrounding rooms. The reserve funds will be used for maintenance
around the district, including replacing aging oil tanks.

With the budget, asbestos project bond and capital improvement
fund balance all officially passed, Orford residents can expect to
pay the most of the four towns in annual school taxes. The owner
of a $200,000 property in Orford would pay $4,014. West Fairlee
residents with property at the same value will pay $3,945,
Vershire residents will pay $3,669 and Fairlee residents will pay
$3,341.

The 2014 budget represents an increase of $88,000, or 0.6 percent,
over the current year's budget. The largest single increase is
$108,000 for increased health insurance premiums.

But regardless of the large show of support for the budget, a few
residents on the New Hampshire side of the district expressed
concern with their rising taxes.

"I am not pleased with this budget," said Terry Harwood, an Orford
resident since 1997, adding that high taxes in all four towns are
preventing people from moving to the area. "Frankly, I think we
can do a lot more to cut expenses."

He was met with opposition by Nancy Murphy, who works for -- and
sent her children through -- the district.  "The kids are getting
a wonderful education," she said. "Your money is very well spent."

The tax issue stings hardest in Orford. Residents of the town --
the only New Hampshire representative in the four-town district --
have spoken out against the fact that they have to pay higher
school taxes than their Vermont brethren, especially considering
the Green Mountain State has been suffering from a more pronounced
enrollment problem.

"We've just grown, gotten more enrollment in Orford than other
towns," said Cicely Richardson, a School Board member who
represents Orford, when the issue was briefly brought up last
night. "It's all based on student count, which seems like the
fairest way to split it."

As of mid-February, for instance, 86 of Rivendell Academy's 222
students were from Orford. The next highest tally was 58 from
Fairlee.  But the district is not immune to the lagging enrollment
that has hit the Twin States hard over the past few years,
especially Vermont.

During the 2009-2010 school year, the district had 507 students.
This year, it has 482. However, outgoing School Board Chairwoman
Sandra Smith-Ordway said that projections done for the board in
2006 said the district would have 60 less students this year than
it actually does.  "Yes, we're still seeing a decline, but not to
what was projected," Smith-Ordway said.

Results for the School Board elections, which were conducted by
Australian ballot before, during and after the meeting, were not
immediately available last night; however, none of the seven open
positions were contested.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Roof Fix at Brisbane Home Exposed Fibro
--------------------------------------------------------
Australian Associated Press reports that a couple of dodgy tradies
have exposed deadly asbestos on an elderly Brisbane couple's roof.
Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ) says the two men
recently approached the couple in their home in north Brisbane and
offered to clean their roof.  They used a high-pressure water
cleaner, which exposed the dangerous material.

WHSQ head Simon Blackwood estimates the clean-up bill will be
about $10,000.  "High-pressure water cleaners should never be used
to clean these types of roofs, as this increases the risk of
exposure to airborne asbestos fibres," he said in a statement.

"It is also illegal."

Inhaling asbestos fibres can cause serious illnesses, including
lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis.

The Office of Fair Trading is using the incident as a warning
against rogue traders.  Executive director Brian Bauer said
travelling conmen often lacked proper qualifications and their
workmanship was sloppy.

"Itinerant tradies usually ask for cash payment upfront, although
it is illegal to take payment for door-to-door service contracts
over $100 within a 10 business day cooling-off period," he said.

The Office of Fair Trading is still on the hunt for the two men in
question.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Exposure Killed Southampton Pensioner
------------------------------------------------------------
The Daily Echo (U.K.) reports that prolonged exposure to asbestos
caused the death of a Southampton pensioner, a court heard.

Elmo Dougherty, 73, came into contact with the deadly substance
while working at Fawley Oil Refinery for 25 years.  Southampton
Coroner's Court heard how Mr Dougherty, of Coxes Drive, Sholing,
worked alongside welders and pipefitters after joining the factory
in 1977.

Coroner Keith Wiseman said this had led to "significant exposure"
to asbestos on an almost daily basis over the years.  This led to
the development of fibrosis and bronchial pneumonia, which
ultimately killed Mr Dougherty on December 4, 2012.

Mr Wiseman recorded a verdict of death by industrial illness.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: April 17 Meeting on Fate of Cwmcarn School
-----------------------------------------------------------
CampaignSeries.co.uk reports that a meeting to discuss whether or
not Caerphilly council will re-open Cwmcarn High School will take
place this month.  A special council meeting will take place at
Penallta House council offices in Ystrad Mynach at 5 p.m. April 17
to consider how best to manage asbestos at the site.

The school buildings were closed in October last year after a
survey by Santia Asbestos Management detected levels of airborne
asbestos.  Further surveys have been undertaken, resulting in the
latest management report commissioned by the school by asbestos
specialists Ensafe.

It recommends asbestos removal and remediation works totalling
almost GBP1 million, and says pupils could be taught in
demountable buildings while work is carried out. This is the
preferred option for the school and governing body.  A range of
options are currently being put together for councillors to
consider at the meeting before agreeing a way forward.

Cllr Rhiannon Passmore, CCBC cabinet member for education said:
"I'm sure the school and the wider community will welcome the news
that the date has been set for this important meeting.

"We fully recognise the strength of feeling in the community and
all concerned want to agree a way forward as a matter of urgency.
We have a duty to protect the health and wellbeing of pupils at
the school and must ensure that all options are considered so
councillors can make a fully informed choice about the future of
the site."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Abatement at Oswego School During Spring Break
---------------------------------------------------------------
Oswego County Today reports that asbestos abatement will be
conducted during the spring break at the Oswego High School.
Continuing work at the school is part of the project to improve
the restroom facilities.

By the time the students return the restrooms that have been
renovated on the south side of the building should be ready for
use.  However, the abatement, which began March 28, will continue
throughout first week April.

The bulk of the project will be in the "north" toilet rooms and
there will be slight work in the corridor across from the main
office.  Student athletes are asked to use the usual sports entry
way in the area of the weight room.

Public traffic within the high school will be limited in the two
areas where asbestos abatement is being conducted.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fire at Bloxwich Furniture Factory Exposes Fibro
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Bloxwich Telegraph reports local residents were advised to stay in
their homes and keep the windows closed following a fire at a
furniture factory in Bloxwich.  Fire crews from Bloxwich, Walsall,
Willenhall and West Bromwich were called to the single storey
brick building at D.F. Jones in Willenhall Lane after the fire
broke out just after midday March 28.

The blaze caused the road to be closed in both directions between
the Leamore Lane junction and the Fryers Road junction.  Five fire
appliances and an hydraulic platform were called to the scene.  No
one was in the factory at the time of the blaze and there have
been no reports of injuries.

West Midlands Fire Service have said that part of the building has
collapsed.  Gas and electricity supplies have been isolated by the
utility companies.  West Midlands Fire Service also alerted
Walsall Council's pollution control officers as some cement
asbestos material from the roof, believed to be a lower risk type,
has blown over footpaths, roads and garden areas.

Specialist contractors cleared the material away in the evening
and residents, who were given a letter of advice, were told when
it is safe to leave their properties.

Councillor Mike Bird, portfolio holder for Public Health with
Walsall Council, said:  "I understand asbestos material from the
roof of the factory has blown over footpaths, roads and garden
areas.

"Officers have advised that this appears to be a lower risk type
of asbestos which is commonly found in industrial-type buildings.

"We are asking residents to stay in their homes while this clean-
up is carried out and expect it to be finished later this
evening."

The cause of the blaze has not yet been reported.

The Health Protection Agency is aware of the incident.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Former Air Force Site Undergoes Abatement
----------------------------------------------------------
Pat Guth, writing for Mesothelioma.com, reports that a former
Massachusetts Air Force site that was once used for testing and
research on Cold War-era antenna and radar technology is being
cleared of asbestos this week after sitting dormant for almost two
years.

An article in the Salem News reports that the Ipswich-based
facility will be tackled by workers in haz-mat suits whose goal it
will be to rid the site of asbestos materials. They hope that the
bulk of the work would be completed by April 1.

Since 1945, the U.S. Air Force leased the facility from the
Proprietors of Great Neck, a family group that owns the land. The
Air Force deactivated and closed the facility about two years ago
and the owners of the land have since asked the military to
demolish all the structures on the property. Because many contain
asbestos, abatement will need to be accomplished before
demolition.

"The purpose of the project is to restore the site to conditions
similar to those encountered on the site when the U.S. Air Force
first occupied the location in 1943," said Tim Dugan, a
spokesperson for the Army Corps of Engineers. "The pedestrians are
perfectly safe as long as they don't enter the restricted
construction site," he added upon hearing concerns from area
residents.

While the Corps of Engineers will certainly take all measures
necessary to keep local residents safe during asbestos removal,
chances are that those stationed at the facility or civilians who
worked at the Ipswich testing location in the past may have been
exposed to hazardous asbestos materials during their work years.
Veterans of the military, including the Navy, Army, and Air Force,
have one of the highest rates of mesothelioma in the United
States, with nearly one-third of all diagnosed cases attributed to
exposure in locations such as naval shipyards.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ex-Maryland Mayor Sues CSX Over Lung Cancer
------------------------------------------------------------
Jon Campisi, writing for The Pennsylvania Record, reports that an
elderly Maryland man who was diagnosed with lung cancer on Jan. 30
of last year has filed a mass tort injury claim in the asbestos
docket consolidated in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

Lawyers representing Frank K. Nethken, 82, and his wife, Velma,
filed suit in federal court on March 25 against CSX
Transportation.  The complaint states that Frank Nethken's lung
cancer diagnosis was a direct result of the plaintiff having been
exposed to products containing asbestos during his working years.

An employment history contained within the complaint shows that
Frank Nethken worked as a United States Navy ground controller, as
a machinist at Cumberland Steel, as a rocket inspector for
Allegheny Ballistics Lab, (now ATK Rocket Center in West
Virginia), and as a machinist for B&O Railroad.

The lawsuit also says that Nethken served as mayor of the City of
Cumberland in Maryland from 1978 to 1982.  He was exposed to
asbestos in all of these positions, the complaint alleges.

Nethken believes he was exposed to asbestos fiber or asbestos
products manufactured, sold, distributed or otherwise placed into
the stream of commerce by the defendants, the suit states.  The
suit notes that the plaintiff was a pack-to-a-pack-and-a-half-a-
day cigarette smoker from 1951 to 2012.  The plaintiffs are
seeking damages in excess of $100,000, plus interest, costs and
unspecified punitive damages.

They are being represented by attorney Robert E. Paul of the
Philadelphia firm Paul, Reich & Myers.

The federal case number is 2:13-cv-01544-ER.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Motel Buildings in Alamogordo Cleaned Up
---------------------------------------------------------
John Bear, writing for Alamogordo Daily News, reports that the
Alamogordo city commission on March 26 took no action against an
owner of two vacant buildings it wanted removed after it
determined them to be "dilapidated."

The owner has complied with the city's demand that he remove
asbestos found in the buildings and he is now in the process of
tearing them down.

Morris Calkins owns two now-destroyed motel buildings at 732 U.S.
Highway 70, which he had used to store equipment related to his
machine shop next door.  The city wanted the buildings removed,
but they were found to contain levels of asbestos sufficient to
require professional abatement.

After finding several bids, the city was set to move forward on
abating the buildings, which it would have billed Calkins for.
Calkins told the commission in February he had found a lower bid
and was granted a one month extension in February.

He told the commission on March 26 that he had performed the
necessary work and was in the process of removing the rubble of
the buildings.  "They're down. It looks a lot better," he said. "I
appreciate the city working with me."

Calkins and the city had been involved in a dispute over the fate
of the buildings for several years.  He said the buildings were
moved to their present location from Holloman Air Force Base,
possibly in the 1950s.  Calkins has been in his current location
since the mid-1960s.

Deacon Smith, who works with Calkins in his machine shop, said
Calkins is well-liked in the community and has helped countless
people learn how to perform machining work.  Smith said Calkins
has always worked with his customers and found ways to make his
services affordable to those who need them.

"He will charge them Seventies prices and just let them pay it
off," Smith said.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cleanup at Former Keene Corp. Site Begins
----------------------------------------------------------
Tom Sunnergren, writing for Phoenixville Patch, reports that the
long-awaited cleanup of the asbestos release site at Valley Forge
National Historical Park began March, according to site manager
Donna Davies.  Actual excavation of soil is scheduled to begin in
April 2013, while the remediation and restoration of impacted
areas should be finished by the summer 2014. The site will be
reopened for public use at that time.

The site in question is a 112-acre area located along County Line
Road and Station Lane.  The soil in that area is contaminated with
asbestos and other hazardous substances including lead, mercury,
arsenic, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. The contamination
was caused by an asbestos insulation manufacturing plant (the
Ehret Magnesia Company and its successor, the Keene Corporation)
that operated within what is now the park from the early 1890s to
the 1970s.

The remediation will include excavation and transportation of
contaminated soils to appropriate disposal facilities and the
restoration of the impacted areas. The National Park Service will
oversee the remediation contracting team, led by Frontier
Services, Inc., in the implementation.

More than 80% of the work will be completed by Pennsylvania-based
contractors.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Expert Says Reopening of Cwmcarn School "Safe"
---------------------------------------------------------------
SouthWalesArgus.co.uk reports that it is perfectly safe to reopen
a Valleys school closed over asbestos fears, an expert told MPs in
March.

David Ashton, director of the field operations directorate at the
Health and Safety Executive, told members of an education select
committee at the House of Commons that the actual level of harm at
Cwmcarn High School was lower than previous tests had shown.  He
said there was a general problem with asbestos in a lot of UK
schools, but said it could be dealt with by some "fairly mundane"
acts of management and routine preventative action, as advised by
the HSE's Control of Asbestos regulations.

He said electron microscopy tests carried out by the Health and
Safety Laboratory at Cwmcarn were more sophisticated than earlier
sampling, which initially suggested there was a high level of risk
there.  He told MPs at the meeting earlier in March: "We did
electron microscopy in that school [Cwmcarn], and our advice to
the local authority there is that it is perfectly safe to re-open
that school because the actual levels, by that more sophisticated
method, were at the limits of measurable quantification."

The school was closed in October after a report by Santia Asbestos
Ltd detected airborne asbestos fibres in ceiling voids.  But two
subsequent reports by the Health and Safety Laboratory and a
company called Ensafe agree the risk is much lower.

A management report by Ensafe completed earlier in March said
children and teachers, currently being taught in alternative
accommodation in Ebbw Vale, could return to the site in temporary
classrooms while asbestos is removed from the affected buildings
at a total cost of GBP962,375.08.

Emergency funding for the work was refused by the Welsh
Government, so parents who set up the Save Cwmcarn campaign group
have taken it upon themselves to launch a Sponsor a Brick campaign
so they can pay for the work themselves.

A spokesman for Caerphilly County Borough Council said: "We have
requested a meeting with the HSE to discuss their position. In the
meantime we are preparing a report for consideration by
councillors on options for the future of the site as we are keen
to agree a way forward as soon as possible."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Buzzards Bay to Discuss Schools Abatement Budget
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The Bourne Courier reports that Buzzards Bay's (Mass.) capital-
spending total for next year is $15.3 million, but $11.1 million
of that figure is tied to a capital debt-exclusion request that
would finance construction of a new public works facility north of
the canal, something voters would have to approve at the May Town
Meeting warrant and election ballot for borrowing to take place.

Town Administrator Thomas Guerino recommends $437,762 for
generator work at the Main Street Community Center and Town Hall,
an expenditure that is driven by a selectmen's directive to
establish a local emergency and storm shelter in Bourne.

Capital-spending requests also include $62,000 to replace aging
grinder pumps in the Buzzards Bay sewer system and $1.5 million
for disposal cell/liner construction at the landfill.

Four Ford Interceptor police cruisers would cost $159,400, while a
new ambulance with an International chassis goes for $245,000; and
a new fire department command car, $45,000.

Hen Cove Pier and dinghy dock expansion totals $200,000, but ramp
reconstruction at the Monument Beach Marina off Shore Road has
been deferred due to bids being 50 percent higher than expected by
Town Hall.

The school system requests $214,000 to continue its technology
plan; notably a wireless network at the high school.

Asbestos

There will be more system discussion with the capital outlay
committee about money for continuing asbestos abatement at Peebles
Elementary and Otis Memorial Schools. The district requests
$100,000; Guerino recommends $50,000.

But the capital spending panel seeks more discussion about
asbestos abatement with system administrators and Facilities
Director Jon Nelson. There is concern about the cost of smaller
mitigation efforts when larger projects might be more effective.
And then there is the matter of asbestos at Otis Memorial on Otis
Air National Guard Base.

The base school is leased to the Cape Cod Collaborative, and the
capital outlay discussion will pivot on money that would be
expended there where the town may have no further use for the
building constructed by the Air Force in the 1960s.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ex-British Gas Worker Calls on Others to Register
------------------------------------------------------------------
The Citizen (U.K.) reports that decades working with potentially
lethal asbestos could have left its mark on Brian Newman from
Longlevens.  Now in his 70s, the former British Gas worker spent
years working at sites around Gloucester, and regularly came into
contact with the toxic material in his day-to-day duties.  Despite
a clean bill of health, the shadow of mesothelioma cast by years
of asbestos work in a time when the dangers were not fully
understood, hangs over Brian.  That type of lung cancer can prove
fatal and lie undetected for years.

He has now signed a register with the GMB Union, logging where and
when he came into contact with asbestos and wants other workers to
do the same.  It is hoped the information could be used for future
compensation claims by bereaved families.

"I haven't shown any symptoms yet but you never know and it is
slightly worrying," he said.

"I want my friends and workmates -- and anyone else who has come
into contact with asbestos to register their experiences. It may
not help them in the long run, but it could help their families.

"It can be hard to think back 30 or 40 years as to when they may
have come into contact. If anyone thinks they may be at risk, they
should record the details as soon as possible."

In 1978, the total number of asbestos related deaths was 499.  In
2009, it was predicted there would be more than 90,000 deaths of
asbestos induced cancer by 2050.

Peter Lodge, a disease specialist with Festival Law solicitors,
has helped the families of two county sufferers win GBP90,000.

"Payments provide a client and their family with financial
security, enabling them to make the best of life and to finance
any care needs or alterations to property which are sometimes
needed when the condition develops in the latter stages."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Authorities Urged to Address Jersey Stockpile
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Jersey Evening Post reports that Jersey's hazardous stockpile
of asbestos could be 'dispersed all over the Island' if there was
a major explosion at La Collette, an environmental campaigner has
warned.

Just days after Islanders feared the worst when the emergency
evacuation siren sounded at the industrial site, Transport
Minister Kevin Lewis has told the JEP that 217 shipping containers
of potentially cancer-causing asbestos are sitting just a few
hundred metres from the site where most of the Island's highly
flammable fuel stocks are stored.

As a result, Save our Shoreline campaigner David Cabeldu has urged
the authorities to use a March 21 false alarm as a wake-up call to
sort out the problem of the asbestos, which has been stockpiled
following years of political deadlock over its disposal.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: CSX, Honeywell, et al. Sued in Pa. State Court
---------------------------------------------------------------
Jon Campisi, writing for The Pennsylvania Record, reports that a
92-year-old Montgomery County man who allegedly suffers from
pulmonary asbestosis as a result of working with products
containing the fiber years ago was one of two plaintiffs who filed
mass tort asbestos claims in state court recently.

William J. Filandino and his wife, Edith, who reside in
Bridgeport, Pa., filed a short-form complaint in the master
asbestos docket at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas on March
21 against 15 defendants who deal in asbestos.

The Filandino complaint, filed by Philadelphia attorney Edward M.
Nass, of the firm Howard, Brenner & Nass, says that on Feb. 14 of
this year, William Filandino was diagnosed with pulmonary
asbestosis, which causes pulmonary impairment and disability
causally related to asbestos exposure and asbestos disease with
symptoms, including but not limited to, shortness of breath.

The lawsuit alleges that Filandino was exposed to asbestos during
portions of his employment with Nicolet Industries, during which
he worked as a spray painter, shipper, dryer, and utility man.  He
was also exposed to asbestos while performing home improvement
work and vehicular maintenance work, the suit claims.  Filandino
also worked other jobs during the course of his career, including
stints as a laborer, saw cutter, and machinist.  He also served in
the United States Marine Corp. from 1943 to 1945.

"Discovery and investigation is continuing as to whether the
plaintiff was exposed to asbestos in any other occupational
settings, or non-occupational settings," the short-form complaint
reads.

The defendants named in the Filandino complaint are as follows:

Asbestos Corp. Limited; Bell Asbestos Mines LTD; BNS Co.; Certain-
Teed Corp.; DAP Inc.; The Drever Group; Foster Wheeler Corp.;
Honeywell International Inc.; IPA Systems Inc.; Keeler/Dorr-Oliver
Boiler Co.; Metropolitan Life Insurance Co.; Pep Boys; Union
Carbide Corp.; and Weinstein Supply Co.

Another asbestos mass tort claim was filed on March 20, this one
also in the asbestos mass tort program at Philadelphia's Common
Pleas Court.

The suit was filed by Philadelphia attorney Robert E. Paul, of the
firm Paul, Reich & Myers, on behalf of Crystal Painter, of
Shepherdstown, WV.  Painter is suing on behalf of her late
husband, Timothy E. Painter, who, was in his early 50s when he was
diagnosed with lung cancer in late April 2010, court papers state.
The lawsuit claims that the cancer was a direct result of Timothy
Painter having been exposed to asbestos containing products while
working as a trackman and machine operator for B&O Railroad and
CSX Transportation in West Virginia from June 1979 to December
1990, and as a signal maintainer for CSX in Maryland from January
1991 to May 2010.

The lawsuit, which names CSX as a defendant, said that Timothy
Painter might have also been exposed to asbestos at other
worksites, although investigation is continuing.

Painter's widow seeks more than $50,000 in damages, plus interest
and $50,000 in punitive damages.

The Filandino case ID number is 130303091.

The Painter case ID number is 130302901.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Baltimore Orioles' Team Doctor Dragged in Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Ian Duncan, writing for The Baltimore Sun, reports that the
Orioles' team doctor, William H. Goldiner, tended to orange-clad
ballplayers at the same time as he diagnosed thousands of blue-
collar workers with asbestos-related illnesses whose cases were
taken up by prominent lawyer and team owner Peter G. Angelos.

Angelos' firm is seeking to revive thousands of dormant asbestos
cases, but some of the underlying diagnoses are facing new
scrutiny from defense lawyers.  They say Goldiner's dual roles
call the integrity of his work into question -- a contention he
says is "insulting and absolutely false."

Attorneys for Union Carbide, a chemical company that could be a
defendant in new asbestos litigation, wrote in a court filing last
month that they oppose the Angelos firm's contention that the
cases have enough in common to be tried together. The filing
argues that medical evidence produced by doctors who diagnosed
large numbers of patients has proved unreliable in similar cases.

Union Carbide points out that Goldiner worked with Angelos in two
capacities.

"The only conclusion one can draw is that Dr. Goldiner prepared
many of the medical reports at issue . . . at the exact same time
that he was employed by (and presumably paid by) the very lawyer
whose law firm eventually filed those plaintiffs' claims,"
attorneys for the company wrote.

Goldiner, who said he is a paid consultant to the team, not an
employee, said he would never diagnose someone with a serious
illness just to do a favor.

"It's damnation by association," he said. "That's what it amounts
to."

Theodore M. Flerlage Jr., one of the Angelos attorneys involved in
the cases, said Union Carbide is trying to divert attention from
its dangerous product.

Union Carbide made the filing as a Baltimore judge considers a
proposal by the Angelos firm to lump together more than 11,000 old
asbestos suits. It's a strategy that helped Angelos make his
fortune in the early 1990s -- part of which he spent to buy the
Orioles.

The chemical company argues that it won't get a fair trial if so
many cases are tried together, and said it is concerned about some
of the medical evidence.

The company's lawyers, who declined to comment, said in their
legal filing that five doctors diagnosed more than two-thirds of
the plaintiffs. In 1995 alone, Goldiner filed reports on 1,157
people with asbestos-related illnesses, according to the filing,
and 77 on a single day -- April 1, 1996, the eve of Opening Day
that year.

In a related filing, Union Carbide's lawyers questioned whether
the rate at which Goldiner identified the diseases indicates that
he was involved in mass screenings that have been shown in other
cases to have led to faulty diagnoses.

Dr. William Beckett, at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Mass.,
and an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School,
said Wednesday that diagnosing some asbestos-related diseases is a
lengthy process involving a medical history, physical exam, X-rays
and other tests.

"The history and physical exam take 20-30 minutes at the very
least," Beckett said.

Goldiner, who also practices internal medicine in Towson, said
that his diagnoses were proper and that his small office regularly
sees more than a dozen patients a day. He said that while he may
have filed numerous reports on a single day, that does not mean he
examined that many patients at once.

He's maintained his practice alongside his work for the Orioles
since 1993, and now holds the title of team physician and medical
director.

The doctor said his asbestos exposure practice predates his work
for the Orioles. He began treating union and building trades
workers in the mid-1980s and said he has no financial arrangement
with the Angelos law firm.

Thousands of people in Baltimore's heavy industries were exposed
to asbestos throughout the 20th century. The mineral, used as an
insulator and construction material, has been shown to cause
cancer and other respiratory illnesses.

Goldiner began screening workers under an arrangement with labor
unions. He said he was paid for his services as a doctor,
sometimes with the money patients won in court. But he said his
fee was not dependent on the success of a lawsuit.

"I looked at it as an opportunity," he said. "There was a need. I
was trying to fulfill a need."

Flerlage, the Angelos attorney, said Union Carbide's attorneys are
using a common tactic to distract people from the company's record
of making a product that made people seriously ill.

"If you can cast aspersions on a procedure as opposed to the major
issue at stake, perhaps you can win the jury over with that," he
said. "It's not new, it's been tried before."

Goldiner added that his medical records are available for defense
experts to review and have stood up to scrutiny.

"How in the world could I be falsifying any of this?" he asked.
"In many respects, this is more of an open book than any medical
practice is."

Flerlage said Goldiner's work with the Orioles boosts his
credibility, rather than undermining it, because it shows that
Angelos trusts him.

"Why would you go to a doctor who is not a qualified certified
physician to diagnose the people who you are investing money in?"
Flerlage said. "That's an absurd proposition."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Dept. to Handle Queensland Fibro Cases Urged
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Robyn Ironside, writing for The Courier-Mail, reports that
Queensland's ombudsman has recommended a new department be set up
to handle the problem of asbestos, as the state braces for an
increase in asbestos-related diseases linked to the home-
renovation boom.

A report tabled in State Parliament on March 21 said any buildings
built before 1990 in Queensland could contain asbestos but there
was a lack of co-ordination and understanding about how to deal
with it.  In one case outlined in the report, a woman who called
her council about asbestos on a neighbour's property in September
2011, received no response until her lawyer got involved six weeks
later.  After more to-ing and fro-ing between agencies, resulting
in a Workplace Health and Safety investigation, the distressed
woman sold up and moved.

Ombudsman Phil Clarke identified confusion with housefire-related
asbestos issues, including which agency was responsible for
removing the material from neighbouring properties and who should
pay for the clean-up.  The report highlighted a case at
Maroochydore, in which a vacant, unfenced house with asbestos roof
and fibro walls was severely damaged by fire.  Despite talks
between Workplace Health and Safety, council and Queensland
Health, no one could agree who was responsible for the
Maroochydore site.

It took over a month for a fence to be erected, during which time
members of the public -- including children --entered the property
and were potentially exposed to asbestos.  If breathed into the
lungs, airborne asbestos fibres can cause asbestosis, lung, larynx
and ovarian cancer, mesothelioma and other diseases affecting the
linings around the lungs and stomach.  Asbestos-related diseases
can take between 10 and 40 years to develop, and were responsible
for 640 deaths in Australia in 2010.

The report said incidents of mesothelioma were expected to peak
between 2013 and 2021.

"An increase in future incidences of mesothelioma from non-
occupational exposure from home renovation has also been
predicted," the report noted.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ex-Preston College Handyman Expresses Concern
--------------------------------------------------------------
Lancashire Evening Post reported in March that a former Preston
College handyman has come forward with his fears over asbestos in
and around classrooms.

Ron Entwistle, 76, has spoken out after reading an Evening Post
story in March concerning death of former lecturer Cynthia Clarke
from asbestos-related mesothelioma.  Mr Entwistle, of Sunningdale,
Woodplumpton, who knew of Ms Clarke during his employment from
1987 to 1998, had prepared a witness statement in her legal action
against Lancashire County Council, but the case was settled
quietly out of court after her 2010 death.

Mr Entwistle echoes the fears of Ms Clarke's sister, Elizabeth
Smith, believing that thousands of others may have exposed.  He
said: "I don't want to pop my clogs and for people not to know
what I do about that time.

"In the late 1980s computers were being installed and the service
routes went through ceiling voids. There were times that we had to
take the asbestos boards out, and at that time I didn't realise
they were dangerous.

"The roof space was two to three foot high, just enough to get
your head in. That was why it was difficult to manoeuvre eight
foot sheets, and why they broke.

"I had to go into the ceiling space regularly to connect up the
florescent lighting which involved screwing the asbestos boards
and asbestos fibres were released then."

Mr Entwistle also claims that fibres were released when cleaners
polished asbestos-impregnated boards that covered internal
drainage pipes, and when asbestos-lined fire doors were taken off
and cut up in corridors.  He said: "When it got to the late 1980s,
and we were told that asbestos was being removed, alarm bells
started ringing.

"They sheeted up the corridors to ensure that asbestos dust did
not escape, but I anticipate that the damage had already been done
because of our work."

As stated in a March edition of the Evening Post, the college
insist the information relates to alleged exposure to asbestos
fibres that occurred prior to the College's incorporation in 1992.

A spokesman said: "Before and since this time, asbestos has been
removed from the vast majority of the site and any small amounts
of residuary asbestos containing materials are now controlled via
asbestos registers and the College facilities team."

Preston College only use approved contractors for working with the
residual material and it is not aware of any further claims of a
similar nature.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: UK Mom Blames Fibro for Son's Death
----------------------------------------------------
Yorkshirepost.co.uk reported in March that a mother broke down
March 21 as she told how her young son died from a rare form of
cancer normally associated with exposure to deadly asbestos dust.

Thomas Harry Martin died at the age of 28 after suffering from
malignant mesothelioma, a condition more usually the cause of
death of older workers who have been exposed to asbestos fibres
many decades earlier.  But a post mortem examination found no
evidence of asbestos in Mr Martin's lungs, an inquest in
Huddersfield heard March 21.

His mother Pamela Martin, a retired teacher from Holmfirth,
described how her son had spent two years living and working in
Australia before returning to England and working in Norfolk and
then in Newcastle, as a barman.  He had been healthy and fit but
while working in Newcastle had given up running and cycling,
telling his family that he had been feeling tired.

In February last year, on a trip to Dublin, he told his mother
that he had not felt well enough to drink any Guinness.  After
blood tests, a doctor referred him immediately to hospital in
Newcastle where he was reunited with his mother.

"Thomas did not look at all well. He was told, one week later,
that he was suffering from mesothelioma. I was devastated and
Thomas could not believe it," she told the inquest in a statement.

Mrs Martin said she tried to think back to any possible exposure
to asbestos but couldn't recall any.  Her son returned to
Huddersfield and underwent chemotherapy for three months in Leeds.

In September 2012, Mr Martin decided he wanted his independence
back but a month later had to go into hospital. Although he went
back home his condition suddenly deteriorated and he had to be
admitted to Kirkwood Hospice in Huddersfield.  He was described by
Mrs Martin as frail, restless and in pain. He died peacefully on
November 12 last year.

Mrs Martin told the hearing there did not seem to be an answer to
what had caused the disease.

Dr Philip Batman, who conducted the post mortem examination,
suggested a gene mutation as a cause but this was only a
possibility.

Mrs Martin said the absence of asbestos in her son's lungs had
provided some comfort to her and her son's four siblings that they
were not in any danger from previous exposure to asbestos.

West Yorkshire coroner Professor Paul Marks ruled that the
malignant mesothelioma had arisen as an extremely rare condition,
albeit a natural one and not one caused by any form of industrial
exposure to asbestos.

He told Mrs Martin: "I cannot begin to understand how this must
have come, completely out of the blue, to an otherwise completely
healthy young man. You have my deepest sympathies for your sad
loss."

Outside court, Mrs Martin said her son, who was a former student
at Honley High School, Huddersfield New College and Huddersfield
Technical College, had been diagnosed with mesothelioma a year ago
this week. "It's a vile disease. As a family, with four other
children, I guess we are relieved that it's not asbestos."

She described her son as a popular and well loved young man. "His
funeral was an amazing tribute from people who came from all over
the place. He was a great guy."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: PPSL & VT Flagship Fined Over Asbestos Leak
------------------------------------------------------------
Portsmouth.co.uk reports that two firms have been fined tens of
thousands of pounds after workers were exposed to asbestos.  PPSL
District Energy Limited and VT Flagship appeared at Portsmouth
Magistrates' Court March 20 over the management of replacement
pipe work at HMS Sultan, Gosport.

PPSL District Energy Limited was hired by VT Flagship to replace
corroded steel pipes with plastic ones.

Traces of the poisonous substance where discovered on the old
piping after it was transported to a demolition site owned by
Demolition & Salvage in Hilsea, Portsmouth. Adam Wycherley,
prosecuting on behalf of The Health and Safety Executive, said
three site workers might have been exposed to asbestos and
residents could also have been at risk from when the material was
transported from HMS Sultan in an open-top wagon.

PPSL was fined GBP10,000 and ordered to pay GBP4,291 in costs for
failing to prevent exposure.

VT Flagship was fined GBP12,000 and ordered to pay GBP5,196
because it led the work and didn't carry out thorough safety
checks.

Paul Thompson, chairman of the bench, said: 'Asbestos here has
damaged the good name of both companies.' The matter related to
work in 2009.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Voting on Transparency Bill Postponed
------------------------------------------------------
Megan R. Wilson, writing for The Hill, reported that Rep. Spencer
Bachus (R-Ala.) on March 20 postponed a subcommittee vote on
legislation aimed at limiting fraudulent asbestos injury claims.

The Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency (FACT) Act, which
critics have called an "anti-victim" bill, had been scheduled to
move forward Wednesday (March 20) morning, but Bachus said he
would delay the vote a month so the committee could hear testimony
from people who have been sickened by the carcinogen.

The Republican parliamentarian reportedly told Bachus several
times that the bill needed to proceed and he kept refusing,
ultimately saying he would "take it upon himself" to extend the
time for testimony.

In a hearing March 13, attorney and former judge Peggy L. Ableman
testified in support of the legislation, saying that those who
claim harm from contact with asbestos could collect damages from
trusts established by bankrupt companies, while also suing other
businesses by submitting alternating information about their
exposure.

During the scheduled vote to move the legislation forward on
Wednesday (March 20), Democrats expressed concern that the actual
asbestos sufferers -- including the widows of two victims -- never
had a chance to testify, despite being highlighted as part of the
audience by Bachus in the last hearing.

On Tuesday night (March 19), the three women who had been invited
to the earlier hearing -- but not asked to testify -- sent a
letter to House Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial and
Antitrust Law leadership after learning the bill was quickly going
forward without them.

"You claim that this bill is about victims. Yet, despite holding
several hearings since the FACT Act was first introduced last
Congress, you have never heard from a single victim of asbestos
exposure," they said in the letter obtained by The Hill. "We felt
like the ?invisible people' in that hearing room last week.
Everybody talked about us, but it was starkly clear that our views
. . . are irrelevant and unnecessary in this process."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Nemeroff Law Firm Sponsored 9th ADAO Conference
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Nemeroff Law Firm, a leader in mesothelioma litigation, was a
sponsor of the 2013 ADAO International Asbestos Awareness
Conference, held in Washington, D.C. March 22-24.

This year's conference, "The Asbestos Crisis: New Trends in
Prevention and Treatment," featured more than 30 renowned experts
and asbestos victims from five countries, presenting the latest
advancements in disease prevention, global advocacy, and treatment
for mesothelioma and other asbestos-caused diseases.

The annual conference is put on by the Asbestos Disease Awareness
Organization (ADAO), an organization founded by asbestos victims
and their families to help raise public awareness about the
dangers of asbestos exposure. ADAO is an independent global
organization dedicated to preventing asbestos-related diseases
through education, advocacy, and community. This year's conference
will offer cutting-edge sessions on medical advancements, patient
and caregiver support, prevention and advocacy.

"The ADAO plays a critical role in asbestos research and advocacy
on behalf of mesothelioma patients and their families," said Rick
Nemeroff, founder of The Nemeroff Law Firm, in a statement last
month. "We are proud to support this important conference and we
offer an experienced legal team ready to fight on behalf of the
victims of this disease."

The Nemeroff Law Firm is dedicated to helping individuals and
families who suffer from asbestos related mesothelioma. The firm
focuses on delivering the best possible results in the quickest
possible timeframe. Beyond the courtroom, The Nemeroff Law Firm is
an active and dedicated advocate for mesothelioma research and
patients' rights, contributing to the mesothelioma community and
sponsoring important events like the ADAO International Asbestos
Awareness Conference.

With offices in Dallas, Houston, New Orleans and Pittsburgh, The
Nemeroff Law Firm is a nationally recognized trial firm dedicated
to helping individuals and families who suffer from asbestos
related mesothelioma, harmful pharmaceuticals, and catastrophic
personal injuries or death as a result of the wrongful or
negligent conduct of others. Led by attorney Rick Nemeroff, the
firm serves clients throughout the United States and Mexico,
combining compassion and caring with aggressive litigation skills
to deliver life-changing results. For more information, contact
The Nemeroff Law Firm at 866-435-1831, go to www.nemerofflaw.com
or follow them on Twitter.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Special Master for Discovery Disputes Named
------------------------------------------------------------
Dan Brillman, writing for Reuters, reported in March that in the
latest personnel shift in the staffing of the New York City
asbestos litigation, New York attorney Shelley Rossoff Olsen was
named special master for discovery disputes, according to New York
State Supreme Court, where the cases are consolidated.

Olsen, 58, a specialist in alternative dispute resolution, will
temporarily team with the litigation's current special master,
Claire Gutekunst, who was appointed in 2012. Gutekunst's
predecessor, Laraine Pacheco, served for 10 years.

Gutekunst until midyear will serve as adequacy special master,
responsible for reviewing and signing adequacy and allocation
orders. After that she will step down and Olsen will become the
sole special master.

In her post, Olsen will work with Manhattan Supreme Court Justice
Sherry Klein Heitler, who administers all asbestos-related matters
in the city of New York. The court's inventory of asbestos cases
over the years has topped 30,000, according to Heitler's court
biography.

Among other duties, Olson will help clear out pretrial work,
ensure that deadlines are met, issue recommendations that arise
from disputes and sign orders. Her salary for 2013 will be
$308,000, 40 percent to be paid by plaintiffs and 60 percent by
defendants.

Olsen was selected by a panel of plaintiff and defendant attorneys
after a vetting process that lasted several months, according to
plaintiff lawyer Charles Ferguson of Weitz & Luxenberg, a 25-year
veteran of asbestos litigation who helped select Olsen.

Asbestos cases are among the longest-running mass tort litigation
in U.S. history, with lung cancer and mesothelioma -- a
particularly lethal cancer occurring as a direct result of
asbestos exposure -- the most common asbestos-related medical
conditions.

When New York passed a toxic tort reform act in 1986, it allowed
asbestos claims to be made upon the discovery of the disease
rather than on the period of exposure. That opened the doors to
cases that previously had been barred by a statute of limitations.
Many asbestos-related ailments, including mesothelioma, can take
decades to manifest.

Those lawsuits have trailed off in New York in recent years,
according to Ferguson, due in part to asbestos regulation.
Remaining lawsuits deal with more advanced cases and malignancies,
he said.

The same phenomenon is evident in other jurisdictions. Peggy
Ableman, a former Delaware Superior Court Judge who oversaw
asbestos litigation for almost three decades, said case loads
nationally are ebbing due to the wind-down of direct exposure to
asbestos in the 70s and 80s. Since mesothelioma has a roughly 30-
to 40-year latency period, most of the cases on the horizon are
lung cancer related, which are not as clearly tied to asbestos and
may prove for more complicated trials, she said.

Olsen began work Feb. 15, according to an amendment signed by
Heitler, but her position was not publicized until Monday. Olson
said she will continue her work for JAMS, an alternative dispute
resolution firm, but will focus primarily on the asbestos
litigation.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Australia to Have Agency on Asbestos Issues
------------------------------------------------------------
The Australian Associated Press reported in March that a national
body will be created to prevent more Australians being exposed to
asbestos, described by Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten
as the "worst industrial menace".

Mr Shorten introduced legislation to Parliament on March 20 that
he said marked a historic step, making Australia the first nation
moving towards the ultimate elimination of asbestos-related
diseases.  Asbestos was a clear and present danger at workplaces,
to workers, tradespeople and to public safety, he said.

The Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency, an independent body,
will focus beyond workplace health and safety to environmental and
public health issues.

Mr Shorten's department has begun working with government
counterparts and industry partners to develop a national strategic
plan for asbestos awareness, management and eradication by July 1.
The agency's function will include advocating, co-ordinating,
monitoring and reporting on the plan and provide advice to the
minister about asbestos safety.

"Our aim needs to be to remove this menace once and for all, in
tandem with local, state and territory governments, industry,
unions and the community," Mr Shorten said.

Mr Shorten said Australia led the world in the rates of
mesothelioma. He said 642 Australians had died from the type of
cancer, with an estimated 30,000 to 40,000 Australians expected to
be diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease.

Debate on the Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Bill 2013 was
adjourned.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fibro Present in 65% of Sunderland Schools
-----------------------------------------------------------
Sunderland Echo reported in March that asbestos is present in more
than 65% of schools in Sunderland.  Seventy nine out of the city's
117 school buildings, including nurseries, contain the potentially
deadly material.

Now concerns have been raised that delays to millions of pounds of
funding, earmarked to rebuild many schools, is only increasing the
risk of exposure to staff and pupils.  Many of Wearside's school
buildings, built in the mid 20th Century, have exceeded their
original life-expectancy but are still being used to capacity.
The fear is that as the condition of these buildings continues to
deteriorate so does the condition of the asbestos contained within
them.

Part of Hetton School in Sunderland is currently closed after
adverse weather conditions caused tiles in the roof to shift,
disturbing the asbestos.  The school is among a number in the city
due a share of a multimillion pound cash pot under the
Government's Priority Schools Building programme. But delays in
its rebuild mean it will not receive the cash until 2015/16 at the
earliest.

Of the schools on the Asbestos Register, 63% are maintained by
Sunderland City Council. The remaining are voluntary aided schools
or academies where asbestos management is the responsibility of
the governing bodies.

Many city schools are among the 14,210 built across the UK between
1945 and 1975. Some of these buildings contained a large amount of
amosite, commonly referred to as "brown" asbestos and sometimes
"gray" asbestos - one of the more hazardous forms of the material.

Undisturbed, and properly managed, asbestos is not deemed to be a
risk. However, the continuing deterioration of many buildings has
triggered alarm bells about potential exposure.  If asbestos is
damaged then the fibres can be released and breathed in. A large
exposure can cause mesothelioma.

Bridget Phillipson, MP for Houghton and Sunderland South, has
already raised concerns about asbestos problems at Hetton School
in Parliament.  She said March 20: "Too often our teachers are
having to maintain schools rather than teach in them.

"Asbestos can be safely managed, but it does place additional
burdens on school staff. It's increasingly frustrating to
teachers, pupils and parents that the government's plans to
rebuild schools like Hetton have failed to gain financial backing
from the private sector.

"Michael Gove needs to lay out how his department will get the
financing in place to rebuild those schools in greatest need."

Michael Lees from the campaign group Asbestos in Schools was among
those attending a committee meeting in Parliament last week to
discuss the issue of asbestos.  Michael's wife Gina was a school
teacher, who died from mesothelioma, the form of cancer developed
from exposure to asbestos. She was just 51 when she died 12 years
ago.  Mr Lees said: "Many schools built when asbestos was commonly
used were not designed to last the length of time they have.

"Those built during that period are now rapidly deteriorating and,
as the condition of the school deteriorates, so does the condition
of the asbestos in them.

"If the school has not been well maintained then a parent has
every right to be concerned about their child.

"We don't want to panic parents but they should be aware of the
type and condition of asbestos in their child's school.

"We are also concerned about asbestos in schools that have been
turned into academies.

"Once they become academies, the governing body of the school,
rather than the local authority, is responsible for the management
of asbestos. However, many governing bodies are not trained to
deal with this type of thing, or are even aware they have asbestos
in the building to begin with.

Councillor Pat Smith, from Children's Services at Sunderland City
Council, said: Schools in Sunderland are subject to regularly
condition monitoring as required by the Health and Safety
Executive and council policy. Any risks are immediately identified
and dealt with.

"These condition monitoring and management systems comply with
current health and safety legislation, guidance and advice.

"Asbestos was a common building material in the past and is
present in many public and private buildings. If asbestos is in
good condition and unlikely to be disturbed it is often safer to
leave it in place.

"Sunderland City Council is committed to the safety of pupils,
staff and all users of our school buildings."

Asbestos campaigners are now calling for a national school
strategy to deal with the problem.

Schools list

   Nursery schools
   --------------
Hetton Nursery
Hylton Red House Nursery
Houghton Nursery
Oxclose Nursery
Usworth Colliery Nursery.

   Primary Schools
   ---------------
Albany Primary School
Barnes Infants School
Barnes Junior School
Barnwell Primary School
Bernard Gilpin Primary School
Bexhill Primary School
Biddick Primary School
Bishop Harland Primary School
Blackfell Primary School
Broadway Junior School
Burnside Primary School
Dame Dorothy Primary
Diamond Hall Infant School
East Herrington Primary School
East Rainton Primary
English Martyrs RC Primary
Eppleton Primary School
Farringdon Primary School
Fulwell Infants School
Fulwell Junior School
Gillas Lane Primary
Grange Park Primary
Grindon Infants School
Hastings Hill Primary School
Hetton Primary School
Hill View Infants School
Hill View Juniors School
Holley Park Primary
Hylton Castle Primary
Hylton Redhouse Primary
JFK Primary
Lambton Primary
Mill Hill Primary
New Penshaw Primary
New Silksworth infants
New Silksworth Juniors
Our Lady Queen of Peace
Oxclose Village Primary
Plains Farm Primary
Redby primary
Richard Avenue Primary
Seaburn Dene Primary
Shiney Row Primary
Springwell Village Primary
St Annes RC Primary
St Bedes RC Primary
St Cuthberts RC Primary
St John Bosco RC Primary
St John Boste RC Primary
St Josephs Primary (Washington)
St Leonards RC Primary
St Marys RC Primary
Thorney Close Primary
Town End Primary
Usworth Colliery Primary
Usworth Grange Primary
Wessington Primary
Willowfields Primary

   Secondary Schools
   -----------------
Biddick School
Farringdon School
Hetton School
Houghton Keiper
Monkwearmouth School
Southmoor School
St Aidans School
St Anthonys School
St Robert of Newminster
Thornhill School

   Special schools
   ---------------
Barbara Priestman School
Maplewood School (Old one)
Springwell Dene School
Sunningdale school
Tudor Grove Centre


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cwmcarn School Remediation to Cost GBP1.5MM
------------------------------------------------------------
BBC News reports that an appeal has been made for emergency
funding to help pay for up to GBP1.5 million in works to remove
asbestos from a school which was forced to close.

Cwmcarn High School, in Caerphilly county, shut in October after a
report said its 900 pupils were at risk.  Now, Caerphilly council
has asked the Welsh government to step in and help pay for the
work to be carried out.

Governors and the head teacher say they want the site reopened at
the "earliest opportunity".  In February hundreds of people
marched through Cwmcarn calling for the school to reopen.
Students are currently being educated 12 miles (19km) away at
Coleg Gwent's Ebbw Vale campus.

Rhiannon Passmore, the council's cabinet member for education,
said she was writing to the education minister for appropriate
funds to help resolve the issue "as a matter of urgency".  She
said a "catalogue of asbestos removal and remediation works"
totalled more than GBP1m, while other structural improvements
could raise the cost to around GBP1.5m.

"The council and the whole school community are united in our
desire to agree a way forward in the best interests of all
concerned," she said.

"We took a very difficult decision to temporarily close the school
back in October 2012, but the scale and cost of the asbestos works
needed to make the school safe vindicates our decision to protect
the health and wellbeing of the pupils and staff."

The structural report by Santia Asbestos Management Limited in
October said the asbestos posed a potential health risk, and the
union Unison said demolition was the safest option for staff and
pupils.  However, other reports since have said the level of
airborne fibres was much lower than previously thought.

The Health and Safety Executive said the site was essentially free
of asbestos contamination after a second round of tests, which
some campaigners say should be enough to reopen the school, which
also commissioned its own report.

In a statement issued via the school website, the governors and
head teacher said: "Our view is that the council now needs to take
a decision at the earliest opportunity to return the school to the
Cwmcarn site and fund the remediation works required.

"We urge the council to open dialogue with the school governors to
facilitate a return to the site at the earliest opportunity."

A spokesperson for the Welsh government said: "Funding the removal
of asbestos is a matter for the local authority, not the Welsh
government."


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S U B S C R I P T I O N  I N F O R M A T I O N

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