Iron County has released a second draft of its metallic mining ordinance.
It outlines the process a mining company would need to follow for county approval, and includes a host of regulations and protections.
Zoning Administrator Tom Bergman says the purpose of a local ordinance is to be more specific than state rules can be. For example, he says the draft includes a requirement that a mining company monitor and test nearby private wells.
Controversy over a proposed iron mine in northern Wisconsin will get some national attention this weekend, when a documentary on the topic airs on Al Jazeera America’s investigative program Fault Lines.
Milwaukee-based 371 Productions filmed and edited the piece over the past nine months.
Producers made a series of trips to northern Wisconsin to look at the impact an iron mine could have on tourism and natural resources.
State Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst has filed a complaint with the Government Accountability Board concerning a person who voted April 1, in the town of Anderson, Iron County. Tiffany authored the mining bill enabling a company to begin exploring for iron ore in the Penokee Hills of Iron and Ashland counties.
Challengers won three seats in this week’s Iron County board elections. The wins come despite campaign advertising by a billionaire-backed political advocacy group.
Americans for Prosperity labeled Victor Ouimette, Brad Matson, and Karl Krall as anti-mine activists on a recent mailing. All three won seats on the county board in this week’s election, beating out incumbents.
A conservative political advocacy group funded by the billionaire Koch Brothers is dipping its hand into Iron County board elections. Americans For Prosperity has been mailing fliers to Iron County residents.
The fliers decry the influence of wealthy radical environmentalists who oppose a mine in Iron County, and point the finger at seven candidates who are challenging county board seats in next week’s election.
Contested county board elections in Iron County have given rise to a series of candidate forums.
The Iron County Citizen's Forum is organizing the two nonpartisan debates inspired by the League of Women Voters format.
Organizer Terry Daulton says the controversy over a proposed iron mine has engaged more people in local politics.
“It’s very unusual to have this many people running. And it’s actually brought a lot of people into the fold thinking about what are the things our county is doing – so I think it’s actually energized the public a little bit.”
The Department of Natural Resources held its first public hearing on the Penokee Mine project Thursday. Hundreds of people showed up in Hurley.
People came from far and wide to voice strong opinions on the proposal. There were even a few speakers from the Navajo Nation in Arizona, and an Ashland, WI contingent actually biked the 40 miles to the hearing. Cyclist Michael McKenna says they wanted to their voices to be heard: