August 2020 by Scott Harn
Face-to-face meetings in Washington, DC, with Trump administration officials and members of Congress are still on hold due to the coronavirus, but Public Lands for the People is continuing to work on mining-related issues via phone and email.
Clark Pearson of PLP and I have both been in regular contact with DC officials regarding the best path forward to provide regulatory relief despite the gridlock in Congress.
We submitted several written proposals to jump-starting mining on a federal level and provide regulatory relief to miners—both small- and large-scale—to friends in DC over the past month, and they are currently under review. These proposals deal with everything from streamlined permitting and access to federal lands to federal preemption.
Thank you to everyone who continues to support PLP financially for their efforts. The raffle drawing for 2020 was held after our press deadline, so we do not have a list of winners to report, but you can find them on the PLP website by the time this issue is out. The next raffle is underway, and PLP is also hosting an Oktoberfest gathering, to be held in Kern County in Southern California, October 9-11. You can find more details in their ad on their website.
We are heading into 2019 with a cautiously optimistic view. We feel we are very close to obtaining regulatory relief for miners, and believe this NDAA cycle will prove fruitful.
PLP is also looking toward meeting with the incoming chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, and it appears it will be Senator Barrasso (R-Wyoming).
We now have supporters who are well known and connected in Washington, DC, and who state they will assist us in bypassing lower level staffers and getting us face-to-face meetings with Senators.
Keep in mind there are specific steps that must be taken to get your traditional mining district organized if it has fallen into disarray.
Priorities will include meeting with the EPA regarding suction gold dredging permitting and with the Forest Service regarding revisions to CFR 228A regulations related to mining and access on public lands.
The path to winning this case should have been to make the plaintiffs prove that a foreign substance was introduced and then discharged, which is the “trigger” for regulations under the Clean Water Act.
We spent our evening at some informal get-togethers at two private residences in the DC area, which provided the opportunity to talk with staff members from Congress, other agencies, and a few consultants working on public land issues. We found common ground with many of them, and found a strong ally in a former Congressman turned consultant who agreed that Mining Districts provide the smartest legal route...
The Bawl Mill • Ask The Experts - Where can I obtain chemicals for flotation? • Ask The Experts - Can I get an update on your efforts in DC? • Ask The Experts - What equipment do I need to enter an old lode mine? • Hard Work Pays Off On Hard Rock • The Mysterious Telluride Minerals • Detecting: Getting Away From The Heat And Into The Gold • The Coolgardie Gold Mining Camp of Southern California • Gold Prospecting for Better or Worse: How Curiosity Burst My Platinum Bubble • Prospecting for Copper—What to Look for on the Outcrop • Dredging Tips and Tricks: A Measure of Water Pump Efficiency • Hard Rock 101: Small-Scale Blasting • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices