DRMS Update—Ginny Brannon, Division Director, Jim Stark (Coal) and Russ Means (Hardrock).
- Dan Gibbs is new Executive Director of the Division of Natural Resources
- Not currently affected by government shutdown
- Mentioned a coal mine methane working group
- MLRB approved West Elk Mine Plan, Foidel Creek mine plan amendment
- Will present reclamation awards recommendations to MLRB this month
- No updates to closure costs or POC coordination with WQCD
- DRMS is moving forward with revisions to the MLRB Hard Rock, Metal, and Designated Mining Operations regulations. DRMS is setting up a website for stakeholder comments. Stakeholder meetings scheduled for February 7 in Grand Junction and February 13 in Denver. Depending on stakeholder meetings, additional stakeholder engagement will be determined and a deadline for comments will be set (tentatively March 1). Rulemaking hearing also tentatively scheduled for end of April. Draft will be presented to MLRB in November hearing for approval to proceed with stakeholder review process. Mostly administrative changes:
- Elimination of dual oversight of custom milling operations by CDPHE and DRMS. Move all oversight to DRMS.
- Electronic submittals for annual reports
- DMO release process currently in both Sections 4 and 7. Would like to consolidate.
- General language on required size for signage at operations.
- The link to the Division’s rulemaking web page can be found here: https://mining.state.co.us/Programs/MineralMines/Pages/Minerals-Program-Rulemaking.aspx
DRMS will send draft regulations when available.
Hardrock Mining Water Quality Protection House Bill 1113
Discussed bill, concerning language and potential exemptions. Ginny indicated that the DRMS does not see this bill changing anything on the ground. CMA members are concerned about language around “substantial evidence” for an end date to water quality treatment and complete elimination of self-bonding. Russ Means stayed for this discussion and indicated that he has similar concerns around language and implementation.
- Discussed request by RULE for detailed information from mining companies. Will evaluate potential to have RULE come to a CMA meeting to discuss their process and use of information. For now, CMA is not planning to provide any information.
- Mark Chalmers of Energy Fuels briefly updated the Committee on the Trump Administration’s consideration of the 232-petition addressing uranium.
- Bill to shut down power plants prior to end of life by selling bonds to pay for shutdown costs. Would be paid for by rate-payer charge.
- Potential bill for wolf re-introduction.