Update: Public Lands for the People
October 2010 by Scott HarnPLP’s efforts continue toward restoring the rights of suction gold dredgers in California. They have several appeals currently underway in state and federal courts. There is more to report on this topic, but they have asked me to withhold information until our next issue.
In other court cases, an amended complaint was filed in September against the US Forest Service regarding their Travel Management Plan and the closure of roads in the Eldorado National Forest pursuant to that plan. The lawsuit was filed to force the Forest Service to honor the rights of claim owners to access their claims. This case will be heard in the US District Court, Eastern District of California.
PLP and Resources Coalition, along with attorney James Buchal, have come to the aid of Oregon miners in another case involving the Forest Service. This case involves an attempt by the Forest Service to prevent miners from occupying their claims incident to mining. The Forest Service issued citations to prevent Michael Blacklund from occupying his claim and to force removal of a storage trailer on the claim.
Miner Michael Blacklund pled guilty but retained his right to appeal with the plea because he was unable to afford appropriate counsel to fight the citation. Mr. Buchal agreed to handle the case at cost if enough donations were obtained to cover court filing costs. The Resources Coalition and PLP stepped up to the plate with several thousand dollars to insure this case does not set an unwelcome precedent.
The Forest Service ignored previous case precedent in US v. Lex and Waggener and US v. Shumway. Both of these cases involved a miner’s right to occupy his claims incident to mining, and the miners were victorious in each case. The Forest Service subsequently issued rules in an attempt to circumvent these decisions. This case will challenge those new rules.
Our recent offer to provide matching funds for donations to PLP did not generate sufficient funds to keep the non-profit group in the black. We offered to add 25 cents for every dollar donated, with a cap of $4,000. We’re extending the donation deadline until November 15 in hopes that miners can dig deep in this tough economy to support a very worthwhile organization. Please drop us a note, send us an email at email@example.com, or give us a call at (831)479-1500 if you make a donation to PLP so we can add to your donation. (Contact information for PLP is availabe at www.plp2.org.)
Here are the donations PLP has received so far as part of our matching funds drive:
$500—Bob Dunst, Sebastopol, CA
$150—Jay & Lisa Ernst, Shawnee, OK
$20—Charles Knight, Springfield, MO
$100—Verne Whidden, Poway, CA
$1,000—Keene Engineering, Chatsworth, CA
$151—Rich Haynes, Bakersfield, CA
$50—James Popa, Grass Valley, CA
Thanks you for your much needed contributions—we have sent $492.75 to PLP so far in matching funds.
BLM stated we had 30 days to amend our claim so that it fit within one 40-acre square or we would forfeit the claim.
In developing a mineral property or mining claims, one of the first goals is to identify and quantify valuable deposits. The classic method of doing this is by drilling holes into the ground to sample what is below the surface. The problem is that one or two holes usually are not going to tell you a whole lot...
I first saw Pioche, Nevada while hitch-hiking into town in an old Ford with three good tires and one wheel hammered to an ugly steel disc on fifty miles of blacktop.
In retrospect, I can now see that the thoughtless breaking of one of my safety rules regarding not dredging alone was to be a lesson I won’t soon forget.
The technology used in these devices has advanced greatly in the last century. Many different types of physical effects are used to measure these magnetic fields and we will briefly look at some of these.
The Bawl Mill • Nevada Claim Holders Form Coalition • Legislative and Regulatory Update • How to Handle Claim Jumping • The Bingham Canyon Copper Mine • Prospecting My Way Across Australia Pt I • Recreational Mining in the Cache Creek Mining District, Alaska • California and US Gold Panning Championships • Drywashing and Detecting for Gold • Melman on Gold & Silver