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- Eastern Oregon Mining Association
- 20081101

EASTERN OREGON MINING ASSOCIATION November 2008 Newsletter Volume 230

President: Ed Hardt, P:541-523-3319, F:541-523-8015
Executive Director: Chuck Chase, P:541-523-3285, F:541-523-3285
Director of Governmental Affairs: Terry Drever Gee, P:541-523-6228, F:541-523-6228
Editors: Chuck Chase and Jan Alexander, P:541-523-3285, F:541-5233285
Mineral Policy Coordinator: Jan Alexander, P:541-446-3413

NEW EOMA INTERNET ADDRESS: http://www.h2oaccess.com


Ken has informed me that the new 2008 Silver Medallions and some of them have multiple nuggets. Ken sez that he wanted to remind all of you who don't have a 2008 Medallion, we still have a few left. With Christmas coming up the 2008's make a swell gift to that young graduate. The unique thing is the date commemorates their Graduation and the Gold Nuggets lets them know how much you care. Get your order in now. Mail your check or money order to: EOMA, Medallion, PO Box 932, Baker City, OR 97814. The 2007's sell for $25 plus one dollar shipping. The new 2008's went up to $27.50 this year because of the high silver prices. Don't wait too much longer, it's a real deal with silver going up and up, by next year these will be cheap.

Come to the EOMA meeting and catch up on the latest things that are happening in upcoming mining season. The EOMA holds their meeting the first Friday of the month here in Baker City. The meetings are held in the second floor in the City Hall Chambers of the City Hall. The Eastern Oregon Mining Association (EOMA) will meet at 6:30p.m. Friday in the City Hall Chambers. All are welcome for the general meeting to learn about the association and enjoy our monthly presentation. EOMA's monthly Director's meeting will precede the general meeting and begin at 6:00p.m.) Should be an interesting evening so come on down and see what is happening. For those of you from out of town go South on Main Street until you come to Auburn Ave. Make a right, go one block, City Hall will be on your left on the corner of 1st and Auburn.

Fill out the flyer in the newsletter to pre-order your 2009 calendars. The new calendars will be shipped out on or before the first week of December so you can complete your Christmas list ! If you liked the prior years, you'll love this one. The 2009 edition includes all the important dates, contact info, and mining facts that you've come to rely on plus a whole new array of pictures. With gold prices making history in 2008, some great operations began so don't miss seeing some of the snapshots. Order one for your house, one for your cabin, and give 'em as gifts. If you missed out on the first or second edition of this collectable set, we may be able to come up with another 2007 or 2008 calendar for about five bucks, plus another buck for postage - just send us a note with your completed order form and check.

That will never happen again with the 2009 EOMA Calendar. These wall calendars have all the important dates for filing your waivers, fees, and proofs of labor. They also include BLM's fee schedule, as well as various county, federal, and agency addresses, phone numbers, and contacts. The calendars highlight important mining meetings throughout the year, offer many great mining pictures each month for you to look at and pick out the folks and places you know, and include a pull-out section of interesting gold facts and lore. Each month also includes regular holidays, lunar phases, and space for your own remainders. These calendars are essential to those of you who have mining claims, just really neat if you like mining at all, and may offer some good education for those that don't. They make great, easy, and inexpensive gifts so grab the flyer in the newsletter and order yours now... Christmas is coming ! Calendars will also be available for sale beginning in December at our regular first Friday meetings held in Baker City.

Bonding for 2008 is still $25, Bonding for 2009 will go up. Mine operators with EOMA bonds will be billed in March for their membership dues and bonds. You will need to keep your reclamation bonds current. This will simplify things for you miners, and there will be no questions about who has bonded and who has not. If yours is a new Plan of Operation, you may post bond any time during the year, then you too will be billed annually in March. If a miner posts a cash bond or surety bond, he or she needs to notify EOMA and the Forest Service of this change in bonding. If a miner has reclaimed all disturbances, and no longer wishes to have a Plan of Operation, that miner must contact EOMA and inform us that they no longer wish to be bonded, and they must get their reclamation signed off on by the Forest Service. Remember, EOMA is responsible for your reclamation if you do not do it. So the bottom line is, mine under the terms of your Plan of Operation, keep your bond current, and when you are done mining, reclaim.

Thank you for your donations, please specify which Legal Fund you want your donation placed. We would like to thank Jasper and Lois Coombes and Jeff Boatwright and Joe Mann and the Show Me Gold Prospectors for their most generous support and donations. With out the support from all of you we would not be able to carry the fight on DEQ Dredging Turbidity Permit. A suit filed by Hell's Canyon Preservation Council filed as Interveners on our dredge permit, because they don't think it is stringent enough. We have counter filed in the Court of Appeals. Help us keep up the good fight.......Send your generous donations to the EOMA Legal Fund, 700 PM. A special thanks to all of you for your continued support to defend our dredging rights. Mining Clubs and Associations across Oregon and Washington and as far away as Kansas and Missouri mining clubs and associations have formed an alliance. We are soliciting donations to defend our right to mine. If we lose it lays open all aspects of small scale

Thank you for your donations, please specify which Legal Fund you want your donation placed. A big thanks to all of you for your donation to the Jan Alexander EOMA legal Fund. Although the suit against Jan has been thrown out the animosity between us, Jan and the BLM hasn't changed much. Jan has requested that monies given in her name be placed in the EOMA Legal Fund. There will be a next time, the only thing I don't know is when. Through a change in the BLM regs on 338 Regs the BLM has been aggressively pursuing miners on mining claims to change over to the new 338's. where you loose all your Grand-fathered rights. If you haven't put in for occupancy do so. Send a request to the BLM Field Office in your claim area for occupancy, every thing you get from the agencies is like pulling teeth.. My sources tell me that BLM cop Tom Averet is back in business again harassing miners. If I missed listing donors, please forgive me. We can't let a precedent be set where they can draw back in to recreation or grazing CFR's to give out citations to miners. It is as important to our mining rights as the Dredge Permit we are currently fighting. To those of you that like to camp on your mining claim when you mine this summer, dig holes or do your reclamation, this fight is for you. We have already paid out to our lawyer better than half of our personal legal fund and we need your help. There are two good causes before you and we are trying our best to stay out in front of.

The Malheur National Forest is still trying to evict Twila Combs and Betty Morris from their cabins in Bates. The Forest Service's idea was to raise the ladies' special use fees so high that neither lady could pay. After the Forest Service gets rid of these ladies, the Forest wants to destroy their cabins, along with the Workman cabin which is next to Betty's home.

I have done some research, and what the Forest Service has done to these ladies is a disgrace. Each of them bought their cabins, which were located on Oregon Lumber Company land. When Oregon Lumber Company traded the land to the Forest Service, the ladies ended up on National Forest land, through no fault of theirs. The Forest Service gave them 99 year leases and they had the right to rent out their homes or sell them if they chose to.

Then, without informing them, in 1989, the Forest Service switched the special use permits from recreation residence to private cabin on Forest Service land. The ladies had no idea that this was done, but the switch in permit type meant the 99 year lease was no longer in effect, and Twila and Betty could no longer rent out their cabins to help pay the special use fees or sell them. If they were unable to pay their fees, the cabins had to be removed or destroyed and they had to leave. Last year the Forest Service tried to evict the ladies, saying they were in violation of their permits, which had a clause that required them to live in their Bates cabins year-round. The Forest Service knew that Twila at 79, and Betty at 82, could no longer live in their cabins alone, and were sure they would be rid of the two ladies. I was able to work with the former Forest Supervisor, Stan Benes, just before he left the Malheur, and we got the year-round requirement removed from the ladies' permits. This must have really made the Forest Service mad, because they immediately started raising the fees for the cabins. The Forest Service was sure that the ladies could not pay the increase fees, and they could finally get rid of them and their homes.

However, the Forest Service will not be evicting these ladies. I have informed the District Ranger, Brooks Smith, that the fees will be paid. EOMA is backing me on this.

In order to keep the Forest Service from destroying the cabins when Twila and Betty no longer have need of them, we must gather as much of the history of these structure as we can. If the cabins are nominated to the National Register of Historic Properties, the cabins will be protected and Forest Service can't have them destroyed after the ladies are gone.

What we have found out so far, is that prior to Betty and Twila buying their cabins in 1965, Twila's cabin was occupied by Jeanie Graham after the death of her husband, who worked for the Forest Service. A lady by the name of Gwyn (don't know her last name) lived in either Twila's or Betty's cabin. She was an artist, and her art studio now sits in Austin where it was moved. The Workman cabin, which is empty now that Merle is gone, (Forest Service is currently trying to get this cabin removed or burned) was the first store in Bates. Merritt Weldon is one of the old timers who grew up in Bates, and he is being contacted to see what he remembers about the three structures. If anyone knows about the history of these structures, or knows someone who grew up in Bates who might know some of the history, contact Jan Alexander at 541-446-3413.

EOMA is supporting these ladies in their battle with the Forest Service, but we need your help. Twila is 79, Betty is 82 and each lady lives on a fixed income. They paid their fees when the Forest Service raised them to $100 per year (this was when they illegally switched permit types), and even paid last year when the Forest Service raised them to $400. But this year the fees are to be raised again to $750, and they just can't find that kind of money. The Forest Service knows this, and they are delighted. For some reason they just can't wait to get rid of those ladies and their cabins. Pam Ubeler of the Forest Service has been telling Betty and Twila to start getting their possessions out of the cabins, since she was certain they couldn't pay the fees that are due in December. I called Ranger Brooks Smith and told him that the Forest Service needed to stop bothering the ladies, and that the cabin fees would be paid. Brian Gardner of John Day is working on a website dedicated to letting the public know what the Forest Service is doing to Twila and Betty. Donations to help these ladies keep their cabins are being accepted through EOMA.

Richard Chaney's last day of work in Baker City was October 24, 2008. Geologist Kirk Rentmeister is now the contact for all miners in the Baker Resource area. His phone number is 523-1287.

On November 5, 2008, at 6:00PM at the Extension Building in Baker City, Ken Helgerson, Baker County Road Master, will present four roads to be adopted as official County roads. These are the North Powder Road, that runs along the North Powder River, and three roads on Dooley Mountain; the Mill Creek Road, the Auburn Road and the Alternate Dooley Toll Road. These are all historic roads, all have been carefully researched, and all predate the Forest Reserve and any homesteads they run through. Anyone interested in these roads should come to the meeting.

The County has begun the process of designating Baker County RS2477 roads because the Forest Service is intent on closing roads and keeping the public out of the Forest. If you know of an old road that you want open, contact Jan Alexander, and she can help you with the nomination process. We need to keep our National Forests open for public use.

AMERICAN ENERGY POLICY Reprinted From The Grassroots Journal:
- ANWAR EXPLORATION House Republicans: 91% Supported House Democrats: 78% Opposed
- Coal-to-Liquid House Republicans: 97% Supported House Democrats: 78% Opposed
- Oil Shale Exploration House Republicans: 90% Supported House Democrats: 86% Opposed
- Outer Continental Shelf Exploration House Republicans: 81% Supported House Democrats 83% Opposed
- Refinery Increased Capacity House Republicans 97% Supported House Democrats 96% Opposed

Dear Fred, We are asking you as Commission Chair for Baker County to remove Baker County from the MOU you signed with the Wallowa Whitman Forest. The MOU is not in the best interest of the County or the best interest of the forest roads.

Last fall I gave you a book on Coordination that explained the difference between coordination and the way you have been working using cooperation. At our last public meeting Brian Addison read the difference between coordination and cooperation from a law book. You have chosen to work as a subordinate to the Forest Service. You are going to lose our roads the way the Baker, Union, and Wallowa County Commissioners are going with cooperation.

We also have a major problem with the make-up of the Road Committee. Hells Canyon Preservation Council, ODF & W and ex retired Forest Supervisor, and retired ODF&W cop and others, all openly dedicated to closing roads. They have the same footing and voice as the tax paying , voting stakeholders here in Baker County. In addition, by stacking the deck with these people, who don't have to work for a living, the amount of time they can give to closing roads is infinite. You put together that committee last fall that was designed to do the Forest Service's work for them by identifying roads for closure and identify large areas of the Forest that were to be set asides. The Baker County committee that you put together last fall has put a lot of energy into doing the Forest Service's dirty work, and proposing roads and entire areas for closure.

We, the stake holders are asking one last time for the Baker County Commissioners to withdraw from the MOU and to adopt a policy of coordination instead of cooperation with the Forest Service. We also ask that you immediately adopt the Wallowa-Whitman 1990 Forest Plan. The Baker County Forest Management Plan will be the blue print to manage the National Forest portion of the county. Once you do this, you can write the Forest Service and inform them that you expect their Travel Management Plan to tier to the County plan. Legally, that's what they should be doing anyway. Since their Blue Mountain Revision process is in stagnation, and any travel management decision must actually tier to the 1990 Plan. Baker County holds all the aces in this hand, lets play them using the Coordination process. CC: EOMA Sincerely Stakeholders County Commissioners Chuck Chase

It is hard enough to conduct a mining operation. Miners have to comply with surface use and occupancy regulations, and must also comply with DOGAMI, DEQ and MSHA. But now, it is becoming obvious that the Baker BLM Field Office staff are determined to stop mining on BLM.

Not even one of the five Plans of Operation submitted to the Baker Field Office since 2003 has been approved. Chuck Olson, who submitted the first Plan to BLM in 2003, has waited six years for his approval, which still has not come. There are also three Plans of Operation submitted for Pine Creek and the one on Burnt River, and these also have been completely ignored by BLM. These miners have lost any hope of moving into actual mining operations.

For many years we have mined our small deposits without worrying about MSHA. After all, none of us hires employees, and many of us are simply in the exploration phase of our operations.

Well, unfortunately, MSHA has discovered Northeast Oregon. Anyone can turn you in if you are not registered, it could be the Forest Service, BLM, or environmentalists, so all miners need to protect themselves. Ron Jacobson, head of the Boise office of MSHA, informs me that it doesn't matter if you hire employees, and it doesn't matter if you are a one man/woman operation. If you are involved in mining, and use mechanized equipment, your operation may be of interest to MSHA. Several Baker County operations are now on the MSHA roles, and a lot more will be registering before the mining season rolls around.

Some operators, such as EOMP, have already contacted MSHA, and been told they are hobby mines and do not need to register. But it is up to each of you to make the call. Ron Jacobson's phone number is 208-334-1835

It only costs $1.00 per month to run your ad in the EOMA newsletter. Send your ad and payment to: EOMA, Attn. Editor, PO Box 932, Baker City, OR 97814.

Lets support our sister organization, they have supported us with their membership and contributions to our legal fund. I have attended several of these and they are a lot of fun. Chuck Chase, Executive Director, EOMA (Eastern Oregon Miners & Prospectors Inc) For a $75.00 annual family membership you can mine on any of our claims all you want, any time you want, keep all you find. We will show you how if necessary. For more info write to: EOMP P.O. Box 66 Baker City, Or 97814

STORIES AND LEGENDS (by Carmelita Holland)
Now in a paperback at the Oregon Trail Museum and The Record Courier for $39. Some good color photos. Sewn backs on these books, a collection of historic photos.

FOR SALE ****** FOR SALE ****** FOR SALE ****** FOR SALE ****** FOR SALE

- Three family owned gold mine claims. Aprox. 20 acres each in Elk Creek area. Two year around creeks, 1 pond, county road access. For more information call: 503-658-5737 or 503-286-5893.

- Twenty acre placer claim. Located on Deer Cr. Near Sumpter, OR. Good access to claim, nice campsite. Lots of creek frontage. Includes mining plan of operation and a six inch Keene dredge and all the accessories for $20,000. For more information call: 503-787-3787.

- claims in Malheur County. For more information call 541-446-3562 or Cell: 519-5035.

- Eighty acre association placer claim on Elk Creek. Good dredging creek, for more information call 541-523-3285.

- Liquidating one Hard-Rock Mill and one Placer Processing Plant including, one Black Sand Abrasive Grinder, one Impact Grinder, Rock Crushers, Screens, Rolls, Tables, Jigs, Generators, Trommel, Conveyors and lots more. For more information contact Mike at 541-869-2375

- Placer claim on Bull Run Creek, south of the historic Record Mine near Unity. Turn key operation, Forest Service Plan of Operation runs through 2008. Plenty of water for processing. includes trommel, 65 KW generator, tool van/generator shed on wheels. $30,000.00. Call Ray at 541-446-3449.

- 1975 International 10/12 yard dump truck, 3208 Cat engine - rebuilt by CAT, 5 speed % 4 speed Transmission, Pindle Hitch, 10 Yd box w/side boards (included), 10 wheel tandem axle, Air Gate / telescope cylinder.

- Placer Mining equipment, large trommel, Contact Bert Aylward at 509-337-6744.

- Twenty foot Tandem Axel trailer with a self contained pickup camper. This is set up to haul 3 ATV's or mining gear, a must see. $1,695, or consider trade or offer. Picture available, call: 541-856-3642.

- 2 v 4 Wisconsin 4 inch pumps were running up to two years ago, both for $450. 541-856-3642.

- four two liter bottles of Nitric Acid still in the box. Call Dick Fleming at: 541-523-9935.

- 4 placer & 1 load claims. All equipment, to include, trommel, classifier, backhoe with bucket and scoop, 5000 watt generator, dump truck, various hoses, pumps, clamps, etc. Water rights to pond, furnished log cabin and storage shed, water tank. Forest Service land. Claims only. Not patented. 541-856-3862 or 541-910-3054. $40,000. Possible terms.