Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Mines & Mineral Resources dept. out of money; shutting down Friday

The Arizona Dept. of Mines & Mineral Resources (ADMMR) is running out of state operating funds and is being shut down on Friday.

The Arizona Mining and Mineral Museum in Phoenix was transferred from ADMMR to the Arizona Historical Society last year to become the Arizona Centennial Museum. This left ADMMR with 3 state-funded and a couple of grant-funded positions. They moved out of the museum building into smaller space in nearby empty state offices. The department came to realize that their budget would not last through the year but it's now clear that the state's overall budget situation would not allow for supplemental state funding to carry them through until the new fiscal year in July.

Gov. Brewer, in her budget released last Friday, proposed that ADMMR be consolidated with the Arizona Geological Survey. If that proposal is approved by the Legislature, it would probably not take effect until July 1.

The immediate issue is to see what can be done between the closure at the end of the week and the pending consolidation.

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