Court records show that a shoe manufacturer reached an agreement with a Michigan township nearly 50 years ago that allowed the company to continue dumping tannery sludge in the area as long as the waste didn't contaminate water.
The Grand Rapids Press reports that attorneys representing local homeowners summarized the 1966 court settlement with Plainfield Township in a lawsuit recently filed against Wolverine World Wide. The lawsuit alleges that the company's old landfill in Belmont contaminated water with perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl.
The toxic substances are in a class of chemicals that has been tied to cancer, thyroid problems and other diseases.
The chemicals can be found in firefighting foams, cleaning products, household cookware and carpets, and some food packaging.
Wolverine declined to comment on the ongoing or past litigation