On February 27th, SB 1 passed the Senate.
The Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters (LCV) released the results of a Public Policy Polling poll that shows how Wisconsinites feel about open-pit mining. In addition, the poll asked voters whether they believed mining companies should be allowed to fill in wetlands with waste, legislators should focus on jobs or the environment or both, and how large a role mining companies should play in the drafting of legislation.
Here are some helpful links to the various mining proposals from this session and last session. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me.
Additional Resources on Mining:
As you may know, the current mining proposal AB 1 is virtually identical to the bill from the last legislative session, known as AB 426. Even with the new amendments, it appears that some legislators feel that corporate profits are more important than clean drinking water for our children, protection of pristine and irreplaceable wildlife habitat and an open and transparent process for granting mining permits. A public hearing on the bill was held by the Assembly and Senate committees on mining but one outside of Madison has yet to be scheduled. This is not the way to conduct business or create jobs.
In response to the many issues and concerns raised by AB 1, Senator Cullen recently introduced an alternative proposal on metallic mining regulation based on the testimony of industry experts, federal and state regulators and environmental advocates. This proposal creates a more collaborative permitting timeline, protects current environmental standards, restores contested case hearings to the process and directs 100% of the mining tax revenue to the area impacted by the mine. In the coming weeks, I will continue to review this proposal as well as AB 1 in order to ensure that whatever bill is passed by the Assembly creates the jobs Wisconsin needs while protecting our environment.