LOVELOCK — Although the matter of the temporary restraining order sought by Coeur Rochester Mine against Rye Patch Gold has been temporarily decided, some issues raised during testimony remained unsettled.
One of those issues was signage used by Coeur Rochester and whether or not employees/contractors of RPG had sufficient notice of the active mine site. There was also testimony that some of the signage was only recently been added.
SPJ asked the Bureau of Land Management if Coeur Rochester was in compliance with signage requirements. The response was delayed due to absences over the holidays of key personnel at the BLM.
Janet Hook responded to the request for information. Hook is the BLM representative who inspects Coeur for compliance with federal regulations.
Hook explained it is not customary for the BLM to focus on the perimeter fence during mine inspections. Instead, mine inspections are focused on the facilities to include the pit, heap leach pads and associated cyanide systems, waste rock facilities, etc.
She added the entire perimeter of the plan of operations has not been walked, but fences and appropriate signs have been encountered where expected.
Hook noted Coeur Rochester has not been cited or warned for failure to provide signs informing the public of the active mine site. Further, appropriate signs have been noted at each of the primary access roads and some of the minor two-track roads where a gate had been installed in the fence.
Coeur and RPG are engaged in a legal battle over the mineral rights on more than 8,000 acres of the Coeur Rochester and Packard Mine.
The dispute erupted when RPG filed mining claims on property currently mined by Coeur. The move by Rye Patch was made possible due to the failure by Coeur Rochester to pay $75,000 in federal maintenance fees on its claims, which were due on or before August 31.
On September 1 the claims were closed and the mineral rights became available for any member of the public to claim.
The legal dispute is currently in the 2nd Judicial District Court.