Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Arizona insults mining industry

On January 14, 2011, the governor’s office notified the staff of the Arizona Department of Mines and Mineral Resources that the department would be permanently closed. The staff was given until Jan 21st to close down the department and remove their personal items. The notice was a surprise, and there was no discussion about what would happen to the departments vast mine records, files, and references.

A January 22th Mineweb article made the following observation:

Despite running a state known as one of the world’s richest copper mining regions, Arizona’s governor eliminated the Department of Miners and Mineral Resources, which closed its doors Friday.

The article goes on to say that the governor’s action saves the state $200,000 per year. The editor of ICJM was blunter saying:

In a move that could only be described as asinine, the Arizona Governor’s office has ordered the closure of the Arizona Department of Mines and Mineral Resources. We certainly understand the need for state governments to trim waste in these difficult times, but why the state would close one of the only agencies that helps generate income and create jobs is beyond imagination.

The truth is that the Governor’s action had nothing to do with cost cutting. Far from it. The real reason is that the Governor wanted the mineral museum building for her new boondoggle, the Arizona Centennial Museum. She is not saving any money. She is wasting millions.

In 2010, the Governor transferred the building (which housed both the department and the mineral museum) and most of the mining department’s budget to the Arizona Historical Society. The mining department did not have enough money left for the entire fiscal year. When the department then ran out of funds, the Governor fired the staff. It was the final step in grabbing the building for her new boondoggle.

The Governor’s actions were so remarkably irresponsible that she fired two people whose salary was paid by grants. At the last moment, the state geologist stepped forward to mitigate the damage with other non-appropriated funds.

The Governor’s capricious closure of the mining department and the mineral museum is an insult to the mining industry and to science education. She is also eliminating the popular earth science education programs at the top rated mineral museum.


AZ Gov. Brewer closes state department servicing world-class copper region
Dorothy Kosich
Friday, 21 Jan 2011

Arizona Closes Department of Mines and Mineral Resources
Editor (International California Mining Journal)

1 comment:

  1. But wait...........! Isnt one of the topics of the 5 "C"s copper?