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Michigan school district settles fume-related workers comp claims


PORTAGE, Mich.—A Michigan public school district has agreed to pay $432,000 to settle workers compensation claims by four teachers who alleged they suffered health problems caused by fumes from a high school renovation project.

The Portage Public Schools Board of Education on Monday authorized paying the settlement from the district’s general fund.

“This resolution of pending litigation ends claims by Portage Public School employees who have pursued legal action against the district regarding the air quality issue at Portage Northern High School,” the district said in a statement. “The resolution of these claims reflects no admission of liability on the part of the district and extinguishes the right to pursue any further claims against the district by these current and former employees.”

Renovations on portions of the Portage, Mich., high school began in 2009 and were completed last year.

The district has said air quality tests have found the school to be safe.

Meanwhile, reports say the settlement for the teachers’ workers comp claims will be paid from the general fund because the district maintains an insurance policy with a $300,000 deductible per claim.