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Republicans schedule mining hearing

Published On: Jan 18 2013 04:26:33 PM CST
MADISON, Wis. -

Wisconsin Republicans have scheduled a public hearing next week on a bill to overhaul the state's mining regulations.

The hearing is set for Wednesday morning in front of the Senate and Assembly's mining committees at the state Capitol.

Republicans are trying to persuade Gogebic Taconite to open a huge iron mine just south of Lake Superior. They introduced a bill this week that streamlines the state's mining regulations, including creating a 480-day window for the state Department of Natural Resources to approve or deny a permit application and loosening restrictions on mining waste storage locations.

The GOP says the bill will lead to thousands of new jobs around the state.

Environmentalists counter the mine would devastate one of Wisconsin's last pristine regions.

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