Sunday, January 11, 2009

Gold, Mining and the New Administration

OK, OK, so where do I start with what I've been reading about lately? It was a hard decision on which report I should start with, but, I guess, the one that caught my attention the most was what I am reading about John Leshey, and what he meant to the mining community under the Clinton Administration.

Mr. Leshey, it seems, is head man on the transition team that will oversee the Interior Department. Yup, the same one our own Ken Salazar will be appointed to after the new administration is sworn in. I'm not convinced this is good for Colorado, but then, I suppose it depends of which side of the fence you are on.

In case you aren't familiar with Leshey's role in the Clinton administration, it was as solicitor of the Interior Department, and he authorized the "Mill site Opinion" concerning the size limits of mill sites for mining. His opinion was that they should be restricted to 5 acres for each 20 acre claim. Now, I don't know if you realize it or not, but those old mill sites you drive by are on way more that any 5 acres. Seems to me the U.S. began importing steel around this time, but it probably didn't have anything to do with it.

The majority leader in the Senate at the time, Harry Reid (D-Nevada), said about the paper, that it "could have been written by somebody in the eighth grade, rather than this professor." Now that he is back you can look forward to his "coming up with cockamamie interpretations of the US Mining Law", according to Laura Skaer, executive director of the Northwest Mining Association.

Also, we will probably see more on the Roadless Act as the new administration takes office, as well as the Endangered Species Act affecting how and where mining can take place. An aggressive stance by the new administration in response to "climate change" will seek to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050. A long way off, and since global warming is a farce, they can always say that their efforts were what changed the planet. Next up is the new scientific backpedaling concerning global warming and why Al Gore was always WRONG!

Oh, and to take all of this back to YOU, when there are restrictions placed on mining, remember that it also affects YOU and your ability to access the backcountry, where and when you can prospect for gold, as well as where and when you can camp on U.S. Forest Service land. Yes, I know I didn't cover THAT one here, but that's coming, too. I'll be giving you some information on it in the next week.

P.S. a lot of this information can be found in the International California Mining Journal. If you don't have a subscription you can get one HERE! And, no, I don't get anything for recommending it. Find the subscriptions page and subscribe. They also have announced that subscribers will be able to access the issues ONLINE soon.

Good Prospecting to You,

Shirley Weilnau

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