WMC Hails Creation of Senate Select Committee on Mining Jobs 09/23/11
For Immediate Release
September 22, 2011
FOr Further Information Contact:
Scott Manley, (608) 209-0568
MADISON – Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce Thursday lauded the creation of the Senate Select Committee on Mining Jobs as the first step towards opening the clean iron mine near Hurley and creating thousands of high-wage jobs.
“This is the first step towards developing legislation that will allow for safe clean iron mining to move forward in Wisconsin to foster job creation,” said Scott Manley, WMC director of environmental policy.
The committee will be chaired by Senator Neal Kedzie (R-Elkhorn).
“Senator Kedzie has a strong track record of supporting pro-growth policies, and protecting the environment,” Manley said. “His leadership will be critical to ensure Wisconsin is a national leader in job creation in the mining industry.”
Currently, Gogebic Taconite has proposed building a $1.5 billion mine near Hurley, in Iron County. Construction of the mine would create 3,175 jobs, and the mine is expected to create at least 2,834 direct and indirect jobs. Once fully operational, the mine is expected to generate at more than $1 billion in economic output each year.
Other GOP Senators appointed to the committee are:
• Sen. Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center)
• Sen. Rob Cowles (R-Green Bay)
• Sen. Rich Zipperer (R-Pewaukee)
The Senate Democratic leader is expected to appoint members to the committee soon.
“Iron mining is a clean industry, and will create jobs for generations,” Manley said. “It’s time to move forward so Wisconsin can lead the nation in job creation and send a message to the world that we are serious about job creation.”
Iron ore mining is vastly different that other metallic mining because it has a much smaller environmental footprint, Manley said. Iron ore is bound in rock that is inert and does not present the types of environmental challenges typically associated with sulfide-based mining.
“We can create jobs and protect the environment with iron mining,” Manley said. “We need to make sure state law helps promote clean iron mining.”