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Battle Heats Up Over California Suction Dredging

The State of California is seeking dismissal of the federal lawsuit filed by Public Lands for the People (PLP) on grounds that they are immune from such lawsuits under the 11th Amendment to the US Constitution. However, there is plenty of prior case precedence suggesting that state officials and agencies are open to such lawsuits when they assume responsibility for regulatory authority from the federal government.

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Legislative and Regulatory Update


As mentioned in last month’s column, California Assemblywoman Lois Wolk attached a rider to the pending budget bill. The rider calls for a new study (Environmental Impact Report) on the effects of suction gold dredging, funding for the study, and a two-year moratorium on suction dredging while the study is being completed.

New Tax Considerations For Your Mining Business


The recently passed Economic Stimulus Package of 2008 is a $168-billion economic “rescue” package that includes rebates for taxpayers and tax breaks for businesses. At the heart of the package are tax rebates, scheduled to be distributed beginning in early May. The tax breaks for small-scale mining operations and businesses are retroactive to the beginning of 2008.

Company Notes


• NovaGold Resources
• Golden Star Resources
• SearchGold Resources
• Ivanhoe Mines
• Canyon Resources Corp.

Ask the Experts


How do sluicing and drywashing compare in effciency?

Market Spotlight: Platinum in Demand


Platinum has run to record highs this year, but it’s not a rush of demand for wedding bands that has boosted prices. It’s diesel.

Federal Court to Address Dredge Permits—The Tulloch Rule


Congress passed Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (CWA), which was originally called the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, 33 USC 1344, in 1972. Section 404 authorized the US Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps) to issue permits “for the discharge of dredged or fill material into the navigable waters at specified disposal sites.”

Mining, Health Care & Taxes


Like it or not, the US Supreme Court has ruled and the so-called “Affordable Care Act” (ACA) is now the law of the land—and the Tax Code. What’s more, despite the promises of many politicians to repeal it, it may be around in some form for years to come.

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The Bawl Mill   • Legislative and Regulatory Update   • Utah Proposes Using Eminent Domain Against Federal Government   • Gold in Alaska   • Beach Mining for Gold   • Mining Trade Group Sues Nevada Over Tax Initiative   • China Will Put Rio Tinto Employees on Trial   • Highbanking on the Similkameen River   • Melman on Gold & Silver   • Mining Stock Quotes & Mineral and Metal Prices

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Prospecting for Hard Rock Gold   • Dredger Wins Claim Against Fish & Game Director

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