News and Updates

Agency pushes for gold prospecting restrictions

Agency pushes for gold prospecting restrictions

California State Parks seeks hands-and-pans-only rule on American River

Small-scale miners in California’s Mother Lode are watching history repeat itself as California State Parks tries to implement a hands-and-pans-only rule along the American River in Auburn, Calif.—again. “We’ve been through this rodeo before,” said Gold Prospectors Association of America River City Prospectors President Jim Hutchings, adding that the last time the state parks attempted this ban on other prospecting practices within the Auburn State Recreation Area, the gold miners crashed the parks’ system because it was so inundated with responses in protest.

Monday, October 10, 2016   •   Views: (8654)

Prospectors fight for rights in Black Hills

Prospectors fight for rights in Black Hills

Forest Service cites fairy slipper orchid as reason to ban new mining claims

The U.S. Forest Service proposed  nearly 18,000 acres of land in the Black Hills National Forest to be “withdrawn from mineral entry,” which means no new mining claims would be allowed. The proposal was recorded in the Federal Register on Sept. 24, 2015, but Sam Griner, a member of the Northern Hills Prospectors — a local chapter of the Gold Prospectors Association of America — said he wouldn’t have even known about the proposed withdrawal had he not scanned the Forest Service’s Schedule of Planned Action (SOPA) website.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016   •   Views: (4090)

Of fairy slippers, toads and yellow-legged frogs

Of fairy slippers, toads and yellow-legged frogs

Agency rule-making continues to restrict land access, prospecting

Once upon a time, the U.S. Forest Service was a respected federal agency that served the interests of the American people, and not just the interests of radical environmentalist lobby groups. Those days seem like such a long, long time ago in a land far, far away. It is simply astounding how much things have changed in one generation when it comes to the federal policy on public lands. 

Monday, September 26, 2016   •   Views: (3630)

Miners hold out hope in Oregon dredging case

Miners hold out hope in Oregon dredging case

Josephine County Sheriff Dave Daniel supports fight

On top of the fundraiser being sponsored by Western Culture Conservancy, Oregon miners got another gift recently, this time in the form of two amicus curiae briefs: one filed by Mountain States Legal Foundation and one by the Pacific Legal Foundation.

Friday, September 16, 2016   •   Views: (5154)

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

WMA claims state uses EIRs as weapons against suction dredgers

The following article by the Western Mining Alliance pinpoints the weaknesses in the scientific studies on which the California suction dredge mining ban was based. The original two-year moratorium, which has been dragged out in the courts to become a de facto ban, was imposed statewide in 2009 and continues to this day.

Thursday, September 15, 2016   •   Views: (7015)

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