Legislative and Regulatory Update
January 2000 by Scott Harn• Inter-department letter, Forest Supervisor to Regional Forester, seeks assistance in segregating a significant area of the San Bernardino National Forest from mineral entry.
The following is excerpted from an April 28 inter-departmental letter from Forest Supervisor Gene Zimmerman to the Regional Forester:
"This is a request to seek assistance from the Bureau of Land Management to segregate a significant area of the San Bernardino NF from mineral entry.
The Forest has long identified the need to initiate a withdrawal action to ease the impacts of mining on listed T&E species...Our intent is to utilize segregation as an interim measure to protect these habitats until a formal request for mineral withdrawal can be prepared...The report on the arroyo southwestern toad explains the threat to the habitat posed by an organized group of recreational miners who operate on a mining claim in Little Horsethief Creek.
The validity of their claim is suspect, but we need to have the land withdrawn before a validity exam is scheduled...We request that some priority be placed on the request to BLM ... "
• Conservation and Reinvestment Act (CARA) stopped in Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
Thanks to Senator Slade Gorton (R- WA) CARA did not get out of committee. It appeared that most everyone else among the budget negotiators were willing to throw in the towel and give President Clinton what he wanted on Lands Legacy 2000 or include some version of CARA in the Interior Appropriations bill for 2000.
• Forest Service meetings on Roadless Initiative have ended and the comment period closed December 20. but we are advised that the public will have another opportunity for input.
The Forest Service will now begin writing the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and accompanying proposed rules. When the agency releases those documents (expected in the Spring of 2000) the public will again have an opportunity to comment before the Final EIS is released.
• On November 8, the BLM held a hearing in Placerville, California, regarding withdrawal of 3,368.85 acres of public land along the South Fork of the American River.
According to Miners Alliance board member, Charles Bertolette, the approximately 50 hearing attendees requested the withdrawal to be put off until a river management plan can be devised that will fully address recreational use of the public lands—mining, rafting, etc. The area of the river under consideration is between Chili Bar and Folsom Lake.
According to the December 8, Mountain Democrat newspaper, the BLM has decided to go forward with the withdrawal.
• More “bull” from Fish & Wildlife
• Global Warming is cooling off
What are these rocks?
The Australian government confirmed it was notified that a Shanghai court will try the four Rio employees including an Australian national.
Public Lands for the People is working on a Miner's Bill of Rights with the support of several members of Congress.
...it was impossible not to notice the absence of many junior mining companies that were present last year. Due to the dual circumstances of the world’s credit problems along with the steep declines in base metals prices, many of them, unfortunately, have simply gone broke and closed their doors. Others are so strapped for cash...
The Guyana Highlands referred to here are a tropical upland area that extends from French Guiana on the east to Colombia on the west, with elevations reaching 9,219 feet. It occupies a vast and remote region between the Orinoco River on the north and the Amazon River on the south. There are mountains, tablelands, mesas, and swamps, largely impassable to those on foot.
Q: ...It’s a 2,000-acre property that was mined 100 years ago, still has the old workings, tailings, etc. I am looking to recover gold from the old waste/tailings... plus possibly strip mine some of it. What are my options?
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