MADISON (WKOW) -- New numbers show the controversial mining bill would mean taking away tens of millions of dollars that would otherwise be used for recycling and environmental protection.
The GOP's mining bill is designed to help Gogebic Taconite open a large iron ore mine near Lake Superior.
The Wisconsin Legislative Fiscal Bureau released a report that examines the changes the bill makes to waste rock disposal fees. Right now, mining companies have to pay the state about seven dollars per ton. The money helps fund recycling efforts, sediment and water pollution abatement programs and state administration of contaminated land and brownfield cleanup programs.
The bill would reduce those fees to about 3 cents per ton. The report says the move means Gogebic Taconite wouldn't have to pay the state about $171 million annually it would otherwise owe.
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