We still Have a Reasonable Opportunity to be Allowed Suction Dredges and Motorized Mining on the Federal Lands!

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Dave Mack
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We still Have a Reasonable Opportunity to be Allowed Suction Dredges and Motorized Mining on the Federal Lands!

Post by Dave Mack » Mon Jul 08, 2019 5:23 pm

After careful review of the court documents from the Rinehart and Bohmker cases, we realized that the BLM and USFS (Forest Service) mining regulations had been amended in the early 2000’s, basically allowing the States authority over mining on federal lands in excess of authority which the BLM or USFS is allowed by law!

On June 18, 2019, we sent a formal Petition to the Departments of Interior and Agriculture, asking for the federal regulations to be changed.

About the time we recognized the problem in the federal mining regulations, we were contacted by a fairly high official within the Department of Interior (DOI) who had seen all the letters we sent in from our previous Action Alert. They wanted more information. After reviewing the materials, they have expressed a desire to help! We were told that they (DOI) wished they had known about the Bohmker case six months ago. We believe they would have submitted an amicus brief on our behalf defending mining to the Supreme Court. This would have greatly increased our chances of a hearing… and winning.

This raises an important question: If the BLM & USFS are prohibited from endangering or materially interfering with mining, how can those very same agencies provide the States with authority to do what the federal agencies are barred from doing in the first place?

The good news is that we finally have gotten the attention of top officials in the Trump Administration!

We do not need the courts or congress at this time. We need the Trump administration to develop a federal Rule making to enforce federal law which is already on the books.

The Petition was submitted two weeks ago along with the support of eleven major mining associations including The New 49ers. In addition, there are letters of support from several county governments that have sustained serious economic harm because of the misguided policies against mining by some State agencies.

The Petition has landed home where it needs to be. It is being taken seriously. Now, if we can please just take it to the next step: We need to encourage supportive messages from as many people as possible. This is the moment of truth! Notwithstanding any other opportunities that could arise in the future, this is, to a large extent, our last opportunity in the foreseeable future to regain the use of our mechanized equipment and gold dredges.

You can find everything you need to work with in our July newsletter right here:


After 10+ years of battling with State agencies over exploring the federal lands for highly valuable mineral deposits on the public lands, we have finally arrived at the place where we may turn the whole problem around. This might be the closest we have ever been! Now we need you guys and gals to please step up and send in messages in support of our side.

Thank you for whatever you can do!

Fingers crossed,

Dave McCracken, President
The New 49'ers Legal Fund
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Re: We still Have a Reasonable Opportunity to be Allowed Suction Dredges and Motorized Mining on the Federal Lands!

Post by OregonJim » Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:01 am

This sure sounds like good news for the club. I wish you and the team of lawyers can finally end this insanity. I think frequently about all the gold that has accumulated since dredging ended and how much fun it would be to find some of it. You guys have put up an amazing fight and I am really proud of your efforts. Hopefully success will come soon.
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Re: We still Have a Reasonable Opportunity to be Allowed Suction Dredges and Motorized Mining on the Federal Lands!

Post by Mythicalminer » Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:55 am

I can't stress enough how important it is right now for all friends of mining to read the Petition and then send your Letters of Support! To my knowledge (after fighting for miner's rights for well over 30 years) we have NEVER had high officials in Washington DC actually wanting to help, and even though they know little or nothing about mining, when these state prohibitions were explained to them they instantly recognized that something is WRONG!

I also realize that for the last 10 years or more we have asked miners to write letters, do this, do that, etc., and donate $$$ to help cover legal expenses... all with little or no relief. All I can say is we did not know or realize that the deck was stacked against us. We believe that IF we convince the BLM and USFS to amend their regulations as we request that the LAW will be on our side for once, and that should send a powerful message to the states to back off!

Of course, whether they back-off or not remains to be seen, we must take it one step at a time and the 1st Step is getting the BLM & USFS to amend the regulations. What happens after that depends on many factors, such as the exact language in the amended regs and how far they go.

Bottomline is that for once WE are taking a positive step for change, as opposed to simply defending our rights. Politically, the timing couldn't be better with President Trump signing the Strategic Minerals Act a few weeks ago. "Mining" is on people's minds in Washington... NOW IS THE TIME AND WE MAY NOT GET A BETTER CHANCE!

PLEASE WRITE AND SEND YOUR LETTERS OF SUPPORT FOR THE MINER'S PETITION. Your letter doesn't have to be anything special, a simple "I support the Miner's Petition for Rulemaking" is good enough if that's all your can write.

Be polite, non-threatening, and if you can, explain a little how the prohibitions have affected you. And, be sure to sign & date your letters! Don't leave this for someone else to do... WE NEED EVERYONE to send Letters of Support... WE NEED TENS OF 1,000'S OF LETTERS - so many they can't ignore us or find a way out. The Swamp is still pretty deep... the agencies are overloaded with people that believe they know what's best for everyone regardless of the law or our rights.

The DOI said they wished they had known of the Bohmker case sooner, as they would have backed us up in court. However, we've been sending letters to Washington since last September... how is it they didn't know? The only logical answer is, our letters never got to the right people. All that has changed now that we have direct contact with high Officials in DC... NOW IS THE TIME!!


A lot of people have put in a lot of time and energy getting us to this point... let's not waste it!
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Re: We still Have a Reasonable Opportunity to be Allowed Suction Dredges and Motorized Mining on the Federal Lands!

Post by Tall Tom » Sat Jan 04, 2020 9:26 am

Any headway on this issue?
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Re: We still Have a Reasonable Opportunity to be Allowed Suction Dredges and Motorized Mining on the Federal Lands!

Post by Jim_Alaska » Sun Jan 26, 2020 3:30 am

Tom, the latest info is at this link:


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