NMELC, Current Cases.


Mount Taylor Standby Permit


Location: Mt. Taylor region, near Grants, NM

Opposing Parties: Rio Grande Resources

Initiation Date: July 2009

Status: On-going

Clients/Partners: Amigos Bravos and Multicultural Alliance for a Safe Environment (MASE)

Attorneys: Eric Jantz, Jaimie Park



Issues:

Rio Grande Resources, has applied to the NM Mining and Minerals Division for a fourth standby permit renewal for the inactive Mt. Taylor Mine.  A standby permit allows the mine operator to let the mine remain inactive without having to do any reclamation (clean up). The permit lasts for 5 years. Our clients are challenging the permit application because we believe RGR must do some reclamation rather than leave the mine as is for another five years.

At Stake:

The integrity of New Mexico’s mining laws.

Precedents:

Whether the MMD will allow corporate polluters to avoid reclamation and whether MMD must order reclamation of a polluting site under standby permit procedures.

Latest News:

08/27/2013 - Order filed vacating NM Mining Commission’s order and certifying case to Court of Appeals

05/29/2013 - NMELC files a reply to the Commission’s Response to Appellants’ Statement of Issues.

05/10/2013 - NMELC files Request for Hearing. Read press release.

01/24/2013 - Received public notice for Mining and Mineral Division’s review of Rio Grande Resources’ closeout plan and financial assurance.

01/02/2013 - Filed Reply to Rio Grande Resources Corp. Response to Appellate Issues.

12/27/2012 - Filed Reply to NM Mining Commission’s Response and Reply to NM Mining and Minerals Division’s Response to Appellate Issues.

10/22/2012 - Filed Statement of Appellate Issues.

09/20/2012 - NMELC files Appellants’ Motion to Certify Appeal.

01/31/2012 - The NM Mining and Minerals Division Director, Fernando Martinez, approved a 5 year standby permit for the Mt. Taylor Mine. The standby permit will allow Rio Grande Resources to avoid reclaiming the waste piles at the mine site, which have led to groundwater being contaminated with uranium.  The Law Center’s clients are considering whether to appeal Mr. Martinez’s decision. 

09/01/2011 - NMELC files a post hearing submission comments.

08/17/2011 - Public hearing held at the Cibola County Convention Center, in Grants, NM.

05/30/2011 - Public hearing to be held this summer.

08/05/2009 - Client submitted comments on the proposed ground water discharge permit. Currently waiting on response from the New Mexico Environment Department’s Ground Water Bureau.

06/05/2009 - Mount Taylor was permanently listed in the State Register of Cultural Properties by the Cultural Properties Review Committee. To view the final nomination, a map showing the guardian peaks used to establish the TCP boundaries and other related materials, please visit the New Mexico Historic Preservation Division website.

Case Files:

08/27/2013 - Filed Merits Order certifying case

05/29/2013 - Reply to Commission’s Response to Appellants’ Statement of Issues

05/10/2013 - Request for Hearing

01/24/2013 - Public notice for Mining and Mineral Division’s review of Rio Grande Resources’ closeout plan and financial assurance.

01/02/2013 - Reply to Rio Grande Resources Corp. Response to Appellate Issues

12/27/2012 - Reply to NM Mining Commission’s Response and to NM Mining and Minerals Division’s Response to Appellate Issues

10/22/2012 - Statement of Appellate Issues

09/20/2012 - Appellants’ Motion to Certify Appeal

09/01/2011 - Mt. Taylor Standby Permit Closing Arguments
- Exhibit A
- Exhibit B
- Exhibit C
- Exhibit D
- Exhibit E
- Exhibit F
- Exhibit G
- Exhibit H