Politics & Government
3:53 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Assembly Won't Tackle Local Mining Regulations Bill This Fall

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos says his chamber is too busy to consider a divisive Senate bill to limit local power over mining operations.

Yet Vos says he supports the plan and will likely bring it forward for discussion in spring.

A state Senate committee is still scheduled to listen to public comment on the issue Thursday.

The bill, by GOP Senator Tom Tiffany would prohibit local governments from regulating mine operations in terms of their air and water impacts, their use of explosives and to collect money in advance to repair road damage. Local governments could only impose zoning restrictions, and hundreds of towns do not have zoning authority.

Tiffany and Vos say the state is best at setting uniform standards for mining.

Critics of the legislation say it eliminates local control.

Vos says the issues he wants the Assembly to address this fall include making Photo ID for voting constitutional, advancing mental health care improvements and boosting worker training.