Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan Considering Legal Action Related to Delay in Coal Mine Rules
The Illinois coal mines might face stricter oversight in the future as the office of Attorney General Lisa Madigan is considering legal action against the natural resources agency in relation to lax oversight and failure to follow the terms of a court-brokered plan, which called for stronger supervision of coal mines.
Under the former Governor Pat Quinn's administration, the tougher regulations were initiated as part of broader reforms. They came into consideration after environmentalists criticized that the state Department of Natural Resources was too comfortable with the mining companies and also other businesses which it is supposed to regulate.
Also included in the rules was a requirement for the regulators to provide an earlier citizen notification in case of new mine applications. In addition, the applicant for the mine permit was also supposed to be available to answer questions asked at public hearings.
However, two years have passed since and no new rules are in sight.
Ann Spillane, Madigan's chief of staff said, "It is frustrating that the new rules are not yet in place. It is past time for the department to stop delaying the implementation of new rules and to fully comply with the court order by allowing meaningful public participation."
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