Supreme Court Decision Could Bankrupt O-D-N-R

POSTED BY: George Hiotis
Tuesday, July 8, 2003 - 03:04 PM
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The director of Ohio’s mining regulatory program says an Ohio Supreme Court decision in a coal-mining lawsuit could bankrupt the program. Department of Natural Resources Director Samuel Speck told the state controlling board this week that the fees levied by the court would be more than their budget could bear. The controlling board then approved paying nearly 357-thousand dollars in legal fees to a Columbus legal group that represented R-T-G incorporated, which fought to mine hundreds of acres in Guernsey County. The state previously paid over 150-thousand dollars to attorneys for the village of Pleasant City, and another party in the lawsuit which petitioned to protect its underground water supply. Department spokesman Jim Lynch says the O-D-N-R’s Division of Mineral Resources Management will have to scale back its land reclamation and coal-regulatory programs.

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