Legislative and Regulatory Update
February 2018 by Scott Harn
• Critical minerals a priority
• Montana miners win again
• MSHA backs down
• Environmental groups as foreign agents
• Oregon passes SB 838
• Meanwhile, in California
Present conflicts and realizations having to do with dependence on China have illuminated the fact that suction dredge miners have a vital role to play and are an ignored and untapped domestic resource—until now.
We can either surrender or draw a line in the sand and fight to hold the remaining mining rights we still have.
After many decades of closures, land-use restrictions, and over-regulation, miners and all other public land users may finally see some real relief due to the efforts of MMAC.
Even if the California Supreme Court had ruled in favor of Rinehart, suction dredge miners would be facing the wrath of the State Water Resources Control Board...
Many of you are aware that we have been engaged in litigation with anti-mining activists that have been attacking us through the Karuk Tribe of California since 2003. It all started with their lawsuit against the US Forest Service (USFS), challenging that District Rangers do not have the authority to allow small-scale mining activities under a Notice of Intent (NOI) when the Ranger concludes that the mining activity is not likely to create a substantial surface disturbance.
In the meeting, we presented Ms. Skalski with the various court cases from the 9th Circuit Court on these settled law cases and she was mortified.
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