The state projects a loss of $171 million for pollution abatement and other environmental clean-up funds because Walker's mining bill proposes the current $7-per-ton mine rock waste dumping fee be cut to 2.7 cents.
Less than one-half of one percent of the current fee.
Remember that the bill does not include a tax per ton on ore extracted, but settles for payment on ore sales profits at the end of the mining process - - thus subject to market forces.
So Walker would let an out-of-state mining company/campaign contributor come in, get involved in writing a bill that would wreck the Penokee Hills and Bad River watershed and then contribute literally pennies - - virtually nothing - - to state clean-up funds.
This is beyond sick.
WISC-TV3 and AP had the details:
A Legislative Fiscal Bureau has released a paper examining changes the bill makes to waste rock disposal fees. Currently, mining companies must pay the state about $7 per ton. The money helps fund recycling efforts, sediment and water pollution abatement programs and state administration of contaminated land and brownfield cleanup programs.
The bill would reduce those fees to about 3 cents per ton. The paper stated the move means Gogebic Taconite wouldn't have to pay the state about $171 million annually it would otherwise owe.