Big Surety Broker and Leading Promoter Part Ways

Steven Golia, a leading promoter of controversial individual surety bonds, no longer works for national insurance-surety broker Arthur J. Gallagher & Co., the company confirms. Golia had become an employee in December after Gallagher acquired McIntyre Risk Management, a Cherry Hill, N.J., broker for whom he had apparently worked since late last year. A spokeswoman for Gallagher would not discuss details of his departure. After the acquisition, Golia, who is based in Haddonfield, N.J., announced the new parent would be the managing general agent for individual surety bonds from surety Edmund C. Scarborough, who has backed his bonds with coal waste. Gallagher and Golia later retracted the announcement. Gallagher has had a substantial contract surety practice, and its executives are active in the National Association of Surety Bond Producers, which has battled fraud in individual surety for many years. Golia declined to comment.

DOE Creates Fund To Promote Efficient Commercial Buildings

The U.S. Dept. of Energy is creating a $10-million fund to help demonstrate and deploy energy-efficient technologies for commercial buildings. DOE's goal is to make commercial buildings 20% more efficient by 2020. Commercial buildings consumed about 18% of all the energy used in the nation in 2012, says DOE. The funding will support the testing and validation of technology performance in real buildings and promote the creation of new materials to meet these goals.

EPA, DOJ Set Record $27.5M Fine Against Major Coal Firm

In a settlement with the U.S. Dept. of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency, Alpha Natural Resources Inc., a major U.S. coal company, has agreed to pay a record $27.5 million in civil fines and spend about $160 million for projects to curb discharges of pollutants from mines in five eastern states. Under a consent decree filed on March 5 in federal district court in West Virginia, Bristol, Va.-based Alpha will settle thousands of permit violations committed between 2006 and 2013. The settlement covers about 79 mines and 25 processing plants. The company's capital improvements include an estimated $75-million nano- filtration plant and pipeline at its Cumberland mine in western Pennsylvania.