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Natural Resources Board ready to issue "scope statement" for new mining law

Handout photograph of truck being loaded at Macarthur Coal's Coppabella mine
Handout photograph of truck being loaded at Macarthur Coal's Coppabella mine

MADISON (WSAU-Wheeler News)   The state Natural Resources Board is expected to adopt rules next week for carrying out the new mining incentive package approved by Republicans. A scope statement will be up for approval on May 22nd.

Governor Scott Walker gave his blessing to the statement soon after he signed the mining bill. It gives a general list of objectives, plus the expected economic impact on small businesses. D-N-R staffers say the new rules should not have such an economic effect.

The new mining law sets a time limit for the agency to act on requests for mining permits. It also relaxes certain environmental rules. The law was designed to help Gogebic Taconite open a new iron ore mine in Ashland and Iron counties. Last week, the firm applied for a permit to conduct exploratory drilling at the site.

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