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

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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