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Red Arrow mine violates state rules near Mancos

Company ordered to pay $6,400
Mining equipment and tailings are behind the Red Arrow Mine buildings in Mancos in this photo from 2013.

The Colorado Mined Land Reclamation Board on Wednesday found that Red Arrow Gold Corp., of Mancos, violated state rules and voted to charge the company more than $6,000 in fines.

Red Arrow failed to submit an annual fee, report and map to the state Division of Reclamation Mining and Safety in 2015 and 2016, according to board documents. The board, which is part of the Colorado Division of Reclamation Mining and Safety, voted to impose consequences at its regular May 24 meeting in Denver.

According to Division of Reclamation Mining and Safety representative Russ Means, the company has not had any permitted mining operations in the state since 2014, and there has been no mining activity from the company during that time.

However, the company didn’t complete administrative steps to close out their drilling projects after mining activity shut down, Means said. As a result, the company was still required to submit the annual reports, which contain information about company activities and operations, Means said.

Since Red Arrow did not submit those reports, they were found to be in violation of the rules on Wednesday.

Means said the division staff asked the board to consider the violations at the meeting as a way of expediting the department’s administrative process.

Red Arrow was shut down in 2013 after state regulators found an unpermitted gold mill at a production facility on the west side of Mancos, according to the Durango Herald. Testing on contaminated equipment found mercury levels that were far above acceptable standards.

One set of documents from the company was due to the state by June 24, 2016, according to testimony during the meeting from Michelle Ramirez, Program Assistant for the Division of Reclamation Mining and Safety. The company missed that deadline and also missed filing deadlines on May 17, 2015 and May 17, 2016, Ramirez said.

Red Arrow owed the state a total of $258 in fees associated with the documents, according to Ramirez.

The board on Wednesday voted to charge Red Arrow $6,400 in fines, which is the minimum civil penalty, Ramirez said in the meeting. The company was out of compliance for 32 days and was charged $100 per day for both sets of violations.

The board also voted to impose a cease and desist order prohibiting all prospecting activities on the Red Arrow site until company representatives complied with the state regulations.


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