Letters to the Editor: Exide’s bankruptcy shows why people don’t trust government

Exide Technologies’ Vernon plant, shown in 2015, was shut down five years ago.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: Exide Technologies’ failure to clean up the devastating pollution it caused from its battery recyling plant in Vernon is yet another example why so many of us have lost confidence in government institutions. Even your editorial focused more on the cost to taxpayers for cleanup than on the people who will continue to suffer simply because of where they live.

I sold a small commercial property a few years ago, for which I was required to clean up the soil due to contamination from a business that once operated on site. The process took three years, mostly due to waiting for the government’s final approval.

The delay was not because the people with whom we were dealing were unclear on what was needed, but rather because the government agency responsible was understaffed and probably underfunded. The process by nature is complicated and costly, but I did it in order to complete the sale.


Once again, the little guy follows the rules, while the big boys pay lawyers to flout the rules. And once again, the government, lacking the big boys’ resources, backs down — and no one is held responsible.

Les Birken, Northridge


To the editor: Your editorial asked, “Who’ll clean up Exide’s mess?”

I have a fail-safe method to ensure that the company does: Transport the toxic waste and deposit it at the home of Stefan Stübing, currently the top executive at Exide.

It is only when corporate leaders personally experience the damage they caused that they will take action.

Carmen R. Gonzalez, Glendale