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UPDATE: GOP reintroduces Mining Changes

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Republican legislators have unveiled another bill to rewrite Wisconsin's iron mining laws.

Assembly Republicans introduced the sweeping, 206-page bill at a news conference Wednesday. They promised the legislation would create thousands of jobs without lowering environmental standards.

The legislation closely mirrors a GOP bill that died in the state Senate last March. Under its provisions, the state Department of Natural Resources would have up to 480 days to issue a mining permit, people could challenge the permit decision but not before its made, mining companies could offset damage to wetlands by restoring wetlands elsewhere.

Republicans hope the bill will convince a company called Gogebic Taconite to open an iron mine near Lake Superior. Opponents insist the project will pollute one of the state's last pristine areas.


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