Minnesota Nonferrous Metallic Mineral Mining Rules: Environmental Organizations File Judicial Challenge

Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, P.L.L.C.

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The Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness and a number of other environmental organizations (collectively “FBWW”) filed a December 3rd petition in the Minnesota Court of Appeals to certain Minnesota Department of Natural Resources(“MDNR”) rules.

The petition seeks a declaration that MDNR’s Nonferrous Metallic Mineral Mining Rules (“Mining Rules”) are invalid.

FBWW argue that the rules are invalid because:

  • they fail to implement or make specific the law enforced or administered by that agency or to govern its organization or procedure as defined by Minnesota Statutes section 14.02, subd. 4; and
  • are otherwise so vague that neither a party affected by these rules nor the Court can determine what is required or prohibited.

FBWW seeks a declaration that Minnesota Rules Chapter 6132 “fails to include provisions mandated by statute, and unconstitutionally grants the DNR discretion in excess of its statutory authorities.”

FBWW’s petition cites a permit issued by MDNR as illustrating the alleged problems associated with the rules. This is stated to have been the first permit issued under the rules.

A copy of the petition can be found here.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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