Eastern Oregon Mining Association
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- Eastern Oregon Mining Association
- 20170604

JUNE 2017
Volume 333

Meetings are held on the first Friday of the month. The next meeting will be Friday, JUNE 2ND , 2017 at the Baker City Hall. The building is located at 1st and Auburn Streets in Baker City. The Board meeting starts at 6:00 PM. The general meeting starts at 6:30 PM.
Everyone is welcome to attend these meetings. There is time for discussing mining and getting to know other miners. Lots of good discussions on looking forward to the next season and solving problems. And, every meeting, there is a drawing for a $50 silver medallion!

At our next meeting on June 2, 2017, EOMA will have a presentation on “Rare Earth Metals (REE) And Why Now”. Chuck Chase will give the presentation on the Rare Earth Metals and their importance to the United States. There will be information on how these critical metals affect our everyday lives, especially our military.

Chuck will bring in specimens of actual REE ores with their respective assays, and will provide hand-outs explaining the different uses and facts about REE’s. Many of your placer concentrates more than likely contain these valuable elements.

Get ready for a fun-filled weekend at the Park in Baker. Set up will be Thursday afternoon, July 13, our booth will be open for business at 9:00AM on Saturday morning. We will have panning for the kids, as usual. A miner has donated a nice metal detector for a "kid's only" drawing. We already have a few donations for the raffle and silent auction coming in, but we need more. These can be left at Chuck's house, 740 Valley in Baker. Anything mining related is good. Also fun items for kids to bid on went over well last year.

There are many hundreds of patented mining claims in Baker County. The Baker County Comprehensive Plan states that all patented mining claims are significant Goal 5 Mineral Resources, and will be zoned "mineral extraction" (ME) where mining is an outright use. However, we have found that there are many patented mining claims that are incorrectly zoned as "rural residential" (RR-5) where mining is prohibited. The Comprehensive Plan listed a lot of patented mining claims in the first draft of the plan, but patented properties like the Sumpter Deep Gravel Placer Mine on Cracker Creek, were somehow left off of the list included in the final Comprehensive Plan.

Two companies who own portions of the Sumpter Deep Gravel Placer patent, recently went before the Baker County Planning Commission with separate requests for rezoning from RR-5 to ME. It was a long, hard battle, but eventually both properties were recommended to be zoned as ME. These two companies have paved the way for other owners of patented mining claims that are incorrectly zoned. If you own a patented piece of ground, and the zoning does not reflect that your property is a patented mining claim with an outright use of mining, let Baker County know. Holly Kerns, Planning Director, can be reached at 541-523-8219.

There will be a Boy Scout Camp-Out at the Pilcher Creek Camp Ground. It is located near the Elk Feeding Ground on Pilcher Creek. Eastern Oregon Miners and Prospectors has volunteered to put on a hands on panning for gold for the Boy Scouts. EOMA is providing the panning tubs, which are nicely "salted" with gold provided by EOMA members. The kids all get to keep the gold they pan. We appreciate EOMP stepping up and helping to make the next generation of prospectors and miners. The panning will start at 10:00 and go until the kids get tired or run out of gold.

Forest Access For All (FAFA) had their annual banquet and auction Saturday, May 20th. If you missed this event you really missed something. There were over 100 people there for the event. Dinner was your choice of prime rib or halibut, with all of the trimmings. After the dinner there was a silent auction held in an adjoining room with bid sheets attached to all the items lining the walls. Then, the live auction began with auctioneer Meb Dailey doing his best to sell the numerous auction items and keeping the audience cracked up and laughing throughout the evening. I don’t think I have ever enjoyed an evening as much, and laughed so much, as I did that night.

Meb Dailey continually interacted with the crowd, and kept everyone in stitches. He auctioned off a book about all you wanted to know about Democrats and the Democratic Platform. Hardly anyone bid on it-imagine that... After the book sold, Meb opened the book up and all it had in it was blank pages, cracked me up! Now, I would have bid on that book if I had only known there was no content- knowing Meb's sense of humor, I guess I should have known.

The Department of the Interior today announced the first ever formal public comment period for members of the public to officially weigh in on monument designations under the Antiquities Act of 1906, and the Department released a list of monuments under review under the President’s Executive Order 13792, issued April 26, 2017. A public comment period is not required for monument designations under the Antiquities Act; however, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and President Trump both strongly believe that local input is a critical component of federal land management. Comments may be submitted online after May 12 at http://www.regulations.gov by entering “DOI-2017-0002” in the Search bar and clicking “Search,” or by mail to Monument Review, MS-1530, U.S. Department of the Interior, 1849 C Street NW, Washington, DC 20240.

“The Department of the Interior is the steward of America’s greatest treasures and the manager of one-fifth of our land. Part of being a good steward is being a good neighbor and listening to the American people who we represent,” said Secretary Zinke. “Today’s action, initiating a formal public comment process finally gives a voice to local communities and states when it comes to Antiquities Act monument designations. There is no pre-determined outcome on any monument. I look forward to hearing from and engaging with local communities and stakeholders as this process continues.”

Executive Order 13792 directs the Secretary of the Interior to review certain National Monuments designated or expanded under the Antiquities Act of 1906, specifically, Section 2 of the Executive Order which directs the Secretary to conduct a review of all Presidential designations or expansions under the Antiquities Act made since January 1, 1996, where the designation covers more than 100,000 acres, where the designation after expansion covers more than 100,000 acres, or where the Secretary determines that the designation or expansion was made without adequate public outreach and coordination with relevant stakeholders. In making the requisite determinations, the Secretary must consider:
(i)    the requirements and original objectives of the Act, including the Act’s requirement that reservations of land not exceed “the smallest area compatible with the proper care and management of the objects to be protected”; (ii)   whether designated lands are appropriately classified under the Act as “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, [or] other objects of historic or scientific interest”; (iii)  the effects of a designation on the available uses of designated Federal lands, including consideration of the multiple-use policy of section 102(a)(7) of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (43 U.S.C. 1701(a)(7)), as well as the effects on the available uses of Federal lands beyond the monument boundaries; (iv)   the effects of a designation on the use and enjoyment of non-Federal lands within or beyond monument boundaries; (v)    concerns of State, tribal, and local governments affected by a designation, including the economic development and fiscal condition of affected States, tribes, and localities;(vi)   the viability of Federal resources to properly manage designated areas; and (vii) other factors.


Monument Location Year(s) Acreage
Basin and Range Nevada 2015 703,585
Bears Ears Utah 2016 1,353,000
Berryessa Snow Mountain California 2015 330,780
Canyons of the Ancients Colorado 2000 175,160
Carrizo Plain California 2001 204,107
Cascade Siskiyou Oregon 2000/2017 100,000
Craters of the Moon Idaho 1924/2000 737,525
Giant Sequoia California 2000 327,760
Gold Butte Nevada 2016 296,937
Grand Canyon-Parashant Arizona 2000 1,014,000
Grand Staircase-Escalante Utah 1996 1,700,000
Hanford Reach Washington 2000 194,450.93
Ironwood Forest Arizona 2000 128,917
Mojave Trails California 2016 1,600,000
Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks New Mexico 2014 496,330
Rio Grande del Norte New Mexico 2013 242,555
Sand to Snow California 2016 154,000
San Gabriel Mountains California 2014 346,177
Sonoran Desert Arizona 2001 486,149
Upper Missouri River Breaks Montana 2001 377,346
Vermilion Cliffs Arizona 2000 279,568

Katahdin Woods and Waters Maine        2016         87,563     
President Trump has signed the FY17 Omnibus funding for the federal government through the end of September. The bill contains several policy riders we secured in past appropriations legislation. These include the prohibition on any change in the definition of fill material under the Clean Water Act, a rider to prohibit funds for the Department of the Interior to propose rules listing the Greater Sage Grouse; and Columbia basin segment of Greater Sage-Grouse under the Endangered Species Act was also extended.

Spending Levels:
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): The bill funds the EPA at $8.06 billion, a reduction of $81.4 million below the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $209 million below President Obama's budget request. Within this total, the EPA's research and regulatory programs are reduced by $52 million below the current level and over $300 million below the previous Administration's request.

Bureau of Land Management (BLM): The bill contains $1.2 billion for the BLM, an increase of $15 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. The bill provides an increase of nearly $9 million above the fiscal year 2016 level for on-the-ground Sage-Grouse conservation to protect the species and to preserve federal lands so that they can continue to be used for multiple uses, such as energy development, ranching, and recreation.
Mine Safety and Health Administration: The bill funds MSHA at $373.8 million, $2.1 million below the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $23.6 million below the previous Administration's budget request. U.S. Geological Survey: The bill includes $1.1 billion for the USGS, $23 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. Funding is targeted to programs dealing with natural hazards, streamgages, the groundwater monitoring network, and mapping activities.

President Trump has picked David Bernhardt for Deputy Secretary of the Department of the Interior. Bernhardt, is currently Chairman of the Natural Resources  Department at Brownstein, Hyatt, Farber, Schreck LLP. He appeared before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on May 18 for a confirmation hearing. If confirmed, Bernhardt would be in charge of the day-to-day operations of the department's 10 bureaus and 70,000 employees. He would also have a say in virtually every major policy and management decision at Interior.

Eastern Oregon Miners and Prospectors (EOMP) will be holding an outing on Camp Creek on June 24th and 25th. You don’t want to miss this event, with high banking, sluicing and just a plain good time camp out. Cook-outs and meeting like minded people who want to mine gold and enjoy the outdoors. Take Hwy 7 to Whitney and turn North up the Camp Creek road and follow the EOMP signs. I’ve attended a few of these and these outings are some of the best of times and bring back found memories. For more information go onto EOMP’s Web Site. Just type “Eastern Oregon Miners and Prospectors” into your browser and read all about EOMP and how to join and learn how mine gold for fun and profit.
SENATE BILL 3-Jan Alexander
After months of working with Senator Boquist and other concerned legislators, miners giving testimony, the March 15 Miners Rally on the courthouse steps, and hours of preparation and giving testimony as well as work behind the scenes by Dave Hunnicutt and Rich Angstrom, SB3 has been finalized. The bill is waiting, along with a lot of other bills, to be sent to the Governor for signature. SB3, voids the moratorium on suction dredge mining in ESH waterways, and replaces the moratorium with a prohibition. Suction dredge miners put up a good fight, even demonstrating to legislators how miners clean up and remove lead fishing weights and mercury, along with garbage left by recreationists. But these facts fell on deaf ears. Oregon had already decided to go the way of California and prohibit suction dredge mining in salmon, steelhead and bull trout streams.

But, some good things did come out of SB3. Beginning in 2018, upland miners, working within 300 feet of waterways, are no longer subject to the moratorium/prohibitions. The suction dredge miners will be authorized to mine the tributaries, and suction dredge miners can use siphon or gravity dredges. The problem here, of course, is most miners don't have the fall needed to run these types of dredges. We all know, in Oregon, it never pays to become complacent. The next legislative session is a short one where they can't do a whole lot of harm to us, but 2019 is another full session where mining is sure to take another hit. It’s a foregone conclusion that Oregon will try to target suction dredging in all the other waterways, and will probably try to stop the upland miners again.

EPA SETTLES Bristol Bay Litigation -AE&M
The EPA agreed to drop its efforts to preemptively block the planned Pebble Mine. The agreement will allow AEMA member Pebble Limited Partnership to apply for a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers for the mine before EPA continues any work reviewing water issues in the area.

EPA had proposed restrictions that would have made it virtually impossible for Pebble Mine to get a permit, however, a judge in 2014 blocked EPA from finalizing that decision after the developer sued. That lawsuit will end under the deal as EPA starts the process over. Under the terms of the deal with Pebble Limited Partnership, the EPA will withdraw its proposed restrictions and stop further water-quality studies for at least four years or until the Army Corps of Engineers issues its final environmental impact statement, whichever comes first. At that point, the agency will start a new review process, abandoning the previous proposal that would have effectively blocked the mine. Pebble has until around November 2019 to apply for its permit, depending on when the court approves the settlement. 

These silver medallions are so neat, complete with small gold nuggets in a gold pan. Medallions make wonderful gifts to remember special occasions. You will still be able to get a new medallion for the same $50 price that we have been charging. Call Bobbie at 541-534-3285 to order, or come to our next EOMA meeting on June 2 and buy one there.
The advertising listings are only $1 per month. Send your ad to: EOMA, Box 932, Baker City, OR 97814 or give us a call.

Contact Dave or Earl Graham for all your mining supplies. If there is something you need and they don't carry it, they will find it for you. Call Dave at 541-786-0921 or Earl at 541-805-8206.

The Oregon Mining Association is a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting mining and the mineral industry in Oregon. Supported by donations. Please send what you can to save mining in Oregon to Oregon Mining Association, P.O. Box 23213, Tigard, OR 97281-They have both a website and Facebook page. http://oregonmining.org/

2009 10 foot Cargo Trailer with drop tail gate. Been pulled only 5 miles, $3,000. A 2004 350 Bruin Yamaha quad with about 200 miles on it, $3,500 or both for $6,000. Call 541-215-2774 or 541-317-9209.

Rebuilt John Deere 420 crawler $6,500. Contact Bill Johnson at 541-932-4582

Email Katerina Paley at katerinapaley@alsglobal.com We will work with miners, and get you an analytical elemental determination of your concentrates.

Big Horse Customs has experienced heavy equipment mechanics, a mobile service truck and we can do your welding, fabrication and repairs. Call Sam at 541-519-5751 or 541-519-8196.

ICMJ’s Prospecting and Mining Journal is your monthly source for news, legislation, how-to articles and more. A full year (12 issues) is still only $27.95; or get a print and online subscription for just $31.95 and get access to our last 16 years of articles online too. Published monthly since 1931. Visit us at www.icmj.com or give us a call at (831) 479-1500-get your subscription started!

Wanted:  Full time caretaker for remote property about 20 miles from John Day, Oregon. Primitive, well insulated house, wood heat only, good water from spring.  Off the grid, power from gas generator if needed.  ¼ mile level driveway off county maintained road.  Must have own chain saw, 4 x 4 vehicle with chains, cut own firewood, and help with chores.  Inquire by e-mail (tseal@unr.edu) or by mail to Caretaker, PO Box 8353, Spring Creek, NV 89815.