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Mining compromise could cost Gogebic Taconite $172 million


MADISON, Wis. (WSAU) – Wisconsin’s largest business group said the developers of a proposed iron ore mine would have to pay $172 million a year in waste removal fees, if a compromise mining bill is passed.

Wisconsin Manufacturers-and-Commerce cited an analysis by state budget analysts about a tipping fee that would apply to waste rock which ends up in landfills.

But the sponsors of the compromise – Republican Dale Schultz and Democrat Bob Jauch – said they had no intention to apply the tax to Gogebic Taconite’s proposed mine south of Lake Superior near Hurley.

Schultz spokesman Todd Allbaugh said it’s a concern that’s being addressed which quote, “could have been avoided if everyone would have been upfront about this bill in the beginning.”

Wisconsin Manufacturers-and-Commerce supports a much stronger mining bill passed by the Assembly which does some things the Schultz-Jauch bill doesn’t – like prohibit mining opponents from challenging D-N-R decisions about a mine before a permit is approved.