Mt. Polley Restart Decision Expected “Late June, Early July”
Williams Lake, B.C. – The provincial government will make a decision on the proposed restart of the Mt. Polley mine “by late June or early July.”
Ministry of Energy and Mines spokesperson David Haslam confirmed the news to 250 News in an email this week.
“We want to see the mine re-opened as soon as possible for the communities of Likely, Williams Lake, 100 Mile House and the families that depend on the jobs it provides but we must make sure this is done in a way that protects the environment,” he said.
An application for re-starting operations was received March 20 while a technical review started March 30, and the public comment period ended on May 2.
Haslam says “once the technical review is completed, a report will be submitted to the Statutory Decision Makers with the Ministry of Energy and Mines and the Ministry of Environment and they will make a decision on whether the mine can re-open.”
That decision can’t come soon enough for the Williams Lake Mayor Walt Cobb (see story here) or United Steelworkers Local 1-425 president Paul French, who is hoping for a positive decision.
“We really want to get guys back to work,” he said, adding the mine site is down to a skeleton staff following another round of layoffs last month. “There’s over 120 people left on site including management. It was over 400 July of last year, and that’s a significant amount of people that do not have a job.”