The 1872 Mining Law



I reposted this from the ColoradoProspector's Forum. I hope this gives you enough information on the topic.

I called ICMJ and received permission to post this anywhere it will get noticed. please forward this info to all small miners, dredgers and  prospectors you know.

The 1872 Mining Law

Momentum has been building to make changes to the 1872 Mining Law. There has been a push to reform the 1872 Mining Law by many members of Congress. The National Mining Association and Northwest Mining Association have come out in favor of reasonable changes, including a royalty. Interior Secretary Gale Norton asked Congress to make changes to several areas in October 2001. More recently, two legislators have formed a task force to recommend changes. Small, independent miners and larger miners alike need to get involved and take a seat at the table. Any proposed changes could largely ignore the needs and desires of small-scale operations, independent miners and mining clubs. Many larger mining companies operate on patented lands, which could allow them to avoid a royalty assessed on only public lands.

In 2001, Norton asked Congress to establish a royalty, to authorize administrative penalties, to revise the patent system, to provide states with a larger role in managing hard rock mining on public lands and to make permanent a mining claim holding fee. Congress has not acted on any of her recommendations, yet. The current makeup of the federal government, the re-election of  President Bush and the Republican gain of seats in both the House and Senate could allow for a more reasonable approach to the issues than future administrations. Senator Harry Reid (D-Nevada) became

the new Senate Minority Leader following the defeat of Senator Tom  Daschle. Reid has been one of a few Democrats to strongly support mining.

Reid and Representative Jim Gibbons (R-Nevada) announced several months ago that they were forming a task force to address reforming the 1872 Mining Law, with the goal of introducing legislation next year. Any proposed legislation will likely address the changes

proposed by Norton.

The 1872 Mining Law reform train appears to be leaving the station, and our recommendation is that you, or a representative of your company or group, get on board. There appears to be enough momentum  that changes to the 1872 Mining Law could take place. Those who want to get involved should contact Senator Reid's office

at (202) 224-3542 or Representative Gibbons' office at (202) 225-


ICMJ & CMJ, Inc. Reprinted with permission of ICMJ's Prospecting

and Mining Journal December 2004 All rights