Ramification of a Mining Ban

March 30, 2015


A temporary mining ban is causing concern and debate in Washington State.


Many officials and county commissioners are unhappy about the moratorium, citing a loss of money. One county planning director says the decision will cost the county at least $5 million.


The temporary mining ban came at a time when there was a mining operation taking place, with gravel pit operations being moved from one site to another. The county owns 45 acres of land and had plans to move gravel pit operations to the area. The county apparently still has plans to sell the property.


If the mining moratorium stands, county officials say the opportunity to mine one site. Officials say there were no mining permit applications filed when the mining ban was imposed.


The moratorium was put into place in February. It's now almost April. A Spokane Valley Deputy City Attorney says it was implemented to give city officials assess industrial land inventory and determine how to regulate gravel mining.


One general manager, who operates four mining sites in the area, says the moratorium will hurt business.


Consistency is not easily found in the mining industry. Safe equipment is a must. Regulations change. It's likely there will be more debate surrounding this mining moratorium.