The President's budget plan for FY12 includes a proposal to impose an Abandoned Mine Lands fee, "so that the hardrock mining industry is held responsible in the same manner as the coal mining industry," according to an analysis by Dorothy Kosich on Mineweb.com. This is in addition to the first-time ever 5% mineral royalty proposal that I reported on yesterday.
AML fees are currently charged on coal production and used to reclaim disturbance from that mining. However, those fees cannot be used for hardrock mine reclamation. [right, Iron King Mine superfund site, Yavapai County, AZ]