Original poster Karen Edson
The following story appeared in the the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 12/2/12:"Defeated mining measure changes backed by Gogebic lobbyist" - By Lee Bergquist of the Journal Sentinel (what follows is a summary of the story).
The Republicans intend to try to pass the Assembly version of the Gogebic mining bill (that failed earlier this year) so that the mining company can conduct its environmental studies of the downstream impact (i.e., to the Bad River Ojibwa land) this spring, using the excuse of "if the bill fails, the mining company will lose another year." The mining company has been doing exploratory drilling in the U.P. in the interim. One of the strong supporters of the Assembly bill (Tom Tiffany - R - Hazelhurst) is now a Senator and has been appointed to chair the Workforce Development, Forestry, Mining and Revenue Committee.
Environmentalists, Democrats and a former mining company executive have all advised the Senate Committee on Mining (apparently at one time or another), that Wisconsin mining laws are not “the only player”. The EPA, the Army Corps of Engineers and the Bad River Band all have a stake in what happens in this area.
A lobbyist for the mining company is quoted as saying the company’s goal is to get legislation passed and address the Bad River Band’s concerns later. One of the environmentalists is quoted as saying that if the mining company plans to fill wetlands, then they will be breaking other state law(s).
summary by Karen Edson, De Forest Area Progressives site reference: