CA Supreme Court Rules Against Rinehart -- But there is a solution
August 22, 2016by Scott Harn
ICMJ's Prospecting and Mining Journal
On Monday, August 22, 2016, the California Supreme Court ruled against Brandon Rinehart, concluding that federal mining law does not preempt state "police powers" in regard to the moratorium California placed on suction gold dredging under the guise of environmental protection.
I will admit I am not surprised.
In a unanimous opinion, the court narrowly interpreted previous court rulings that should have favored the miner in this case. And what was not addressed is the bogus "science" the State of California relied upon when they created the moratorium.
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, the unelected agency that was recently placed in charge of suction gold dredge permitting by the state legislature. The board has made no real effort to hide their intentions, which is to make the restrictions so difficult that miners will give up rather than deal with the permitting requirements.
There Is A SolutionThe sky is not falling. We've been talking about it here in the Journal for awhile now. The solution to these regulatory problems is to get your traditional Mining District organized. A functioning Mining District creates a jurisdictional problem for these agencies. The districts were created long before these regulations and restrictions from state and federal agencies were put in place.
Read the "MMAC & PLP Update" in our upcoming September 2016 issue where I highlight some of the recent restrictions that have been eliminated by organized Mining Districts. You'll also see Public Notices for ten separate Mining Districts -- including the largest Mining District in California -- in the September issue. If you are a mining claimholder, get your district organized if it is in disarray. Step-by-step instructions for organizing your district can be found in your June 2016 issue beginning on page 24.
Mining Districts have power that has gone untapped for too long.
CA Supreme Court ruling, People v. Rinehart (.pdf)