From The Los Angeles Times: After an eight-year battle, a metal finishing plant that residents say has contaminated their South Los Angeles neighborhood is closing. The plant, the target of lawsuits and fines, is across the street from 28th Street Elementary School. Last month, a judge approved a settlement in a civil lawsuit against Palace Plating alleging environmental violations that included the release of contaminants into the sewer system. The plant faced three misdemeanor charges to which it entered no-contest pleas. As part of its settlement with the city, the facility agreed to cease operations by Dec. 31, remove hazardous waste and pay the Los Angeles Unified School District $750,000 in restitution.