Hearing on expanding Golden Mine set for July 20

State board to decide whether clay mine in north Golden can expand operations to 47 acres

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The hearing to decide whether the Denver Brick Company can expand its clay mining operations on the Dakota Hogback is set for July 20.

The Mined Land Reclamation Board, which is under the Colorado Division of Reclamation, Mining and Safety, will hear from the applicant and objectors during the hearing.

DRMS staff recommended approval in a June 30 statement, saying the applicant had addressed all adequacy issues DRMS staff had identified. However, the final decision on whether to approve, deny or approve with conditions rests with the board.

However, many have objected to the mine's expansion, describing concerns about noise, safety, wildlife impacts, archeological preservation and more.

During a July 7 pre-hearing conference, stakeholders determined that seven categories of objections or concerns will be discussed, including blasting concerns, wildlife and floodplain issues.

Protect the Hogback, a local organization with about 350 members, will be among the objectors presenting. Between DRMS staff, the applicant and objectors’ presentations and rebuttals, the meeting will take at least seven hours, the stakeholders determined July 7.

Last year, the Denver Brick Company applied to expand its operations at its Golden Mine, which is across Highway 93 from North Table Mountain, from the current 9 acres to 70 acres. However, only 47 acres will impacted by mining.

The company has had a permit to mine the state-owned land since 1977.

DRMS has opened public comment on the permit application twice over the past year, and has received at least 185 comments electronically. History Colorado and Colorado Parks & Wildlife both submitted comments, although the latter’s was not submitted before the deadline.

Mike Rawluk, board member for Protect the Hogback, noted how CPW described the site as important habitat for bats and mule deer. His organization shares these concerns, among others.

Rawluk said he’d prefer for there to be no additional mining on the site. But if there is, he’d like to see it mitigated better, with a smaller footprint, he told the Transcript last month.

“It’s state land, and we’d love to see it just remain as is,” Rawluk said.

For more information, or to read all the public documents related to the case, visit drms.colorado.gov and click on "Applications Under Review."

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