Mo. lawmakers override veto on lead lawsuit bill

A Missouri lead mining company has won a shield against large legal judgments as a result of a veto override by state lawmakers.

Legislators on Wednesday overrode Gov. Jay Nixon's veto of a bill intended to benefit The Doe Run Co.

At issue are numerous liability lawsuits pending against Doe Run, including one scheduled for trial in October alleging that lead contamination caused health problems for children. Doe Run says a costly court judgment could drive it out of business.

The bill would bar punitive damages related to mining sites that ceased operating before 1975, so long as the owners are making "good faith efforts to remediate such sites." If not, then punitive damages would be capped at $2.5 million.

The House vote was 110-50. The Senate vote was 26-8.