Division 35


Published: 2015

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The Oregon Administrative Rules contain OARs filed through November 15, 2015

 

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DEPARTMENT OF GEOLOGY AND MINERAL INDUSTRIES









 

DIVISION 35

OREGON MINED LAND RECLAMATION
ACT
Placer Mines, Coal Mines, and Metal
Mines Using Only Gravity Separation
632-035-0005
Purpose of These Rules
(1) These rules implement ORS 517.750
to 517.951, 517.990, and 517.992 with respect to placer mines, coal mines and metal
mines using only gravity separation. These rules do not apply to aggregate mines.
(2) Applicants seeking operating
permits from the Department should be aware that other state, federal and local
agencies may require the applicant to obtain approval prior to operation. For example,
the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) may require air contaminant discharge
permits, wastewater discharge permits, and solid waste management permits. Where
feasible the Department shall coordinate with other agencies to avoid duplication
on the part of applicants. An operating permit from the Department does not constitute
authorization to proceed without approval of other agencies if required. It is the
applicant's responsibility to obtain other necessary permits.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.517,
517.760 & 517.905
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0010
Definitions
The definitions in ORS 517.750 and 517.910
apply to these rules. In addition, the following definitions apply:
(1) "Affected," as used in
ORS 517.750(15)(a) means disturbed by excavation or any other surface mining or
milling on any land surface during any stage of mineral production, or the covering
of any land surface by surface mining refuse.
(2) A "Period of 12 Consecutive
Calendar Months" as used in ORS 517.750(15)(a) begins on the date surface mining
begins.
(3) "Disturbed Area" is any
area within the permit area boundary where surface or ground water resources are
impacted as a result of mining, milling or mine facilities.
(4) "Expansion" as used in
these rules means lateral expansion consequential to surface mining into land surfaces
previously not affected by surface mining.
(5) "Operating Permit" means
a permit issued by the Department under ORS 517.790.
(6) "Ore Processing" means
milling or other mineral concentration process.
(7) "Permit Area" is the
geographical location of surface mining as defined in ORS 517.750(15). Permit area
is defined by boundaries submitted on a map acceptable to the Department and means
the area to be covered by an operating permit. The permit area will generally be
a parcel or contiguous parcels available to the permittee for surface mining. Areas
used for the storage or disposition of any product or waste material from the surface
mining operation even though separate from the area of extraction shall be included
in the permit area. The permit area may be redefined as mining progresses. In the
case of exploration conducted under an operating permit, the permit area includes,
but is not limited to, areas proposed for surface disturbance by drilling, drill
pad construction, trenches and any roads newly constructed or improved with heavy
equipment other than the road used to access the permit area.
(8) "Pre-Mine Use" when used
in reference to surface or ground water means pre-mine uses that include but are
not limited to:
(a) Drinking water;
(b) Fishery;
(c) Agriculture;
(d) Recreation.
(9) "Total Exemption" means
surface mining that is exempted from the requirements of these rules. The Department
may require certain information to be provided under OAR 632-035-0016(2) to establish
exemptions.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.910
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0015
General Information
(1) Information Requirements. The Department
may require any information needed to determine the status of any surface mining.
Information subject to ORS 517.901 will be held confidential. Information concerning
the location and the identity of mine owners and operators are matters of public
record, as are actions taken by the Department with regard to any mining operation
or permit application.
(2) Inspections. As provided
by ORS 517.850 the Department may, after reasonable notice, inspect any surface
mining site to determine status or compliance. The Department will report the results
of these inspections to the permittee in writing.
(a) Initial inspections may
be conducted by the Department. Reasons for the inspections include but are not
limited to:
(A) Determining existing
environmental conditions;
(B) Reviewing the proposed
mine operation;
(C) Reviewing the proposed
reclamation plan;
(D) Collecting data to calculate
a bond;
(E) Monitoring the construction
of facilities.
(b) Annual and non-scheduled
inspections may be conducted by the Department. Reasons for the inspection include
but are not limited to:
(A) Reviewing operating permit
compliance;
(B) Investigating public
complaints;
(C) Evaluating the site bond
level.
(3) Surface Mining on Federal
Lands. Surface mining conducted on federal lands is subject to these rules. The
Department shall coordinate with agencies of the federal government to minimize
conflict or duplication in operating, reclamation and security requirements. The
Board may enter into formal agreements with federal agencies to establish the means
by which these rules are carried out.
(4) Fees. Application fees
for an operating permit issued under this rule division are established by the Department
as authorized by ORS 517.920. Other fees, including annual fees, are established
by ORS 517.800.
(a) The application fee must
accompany the application for an operating permit.
(b) Each permittee or certificate
holder shall pay the required annual fee and any other accrued fees on or before
the last day of the month shown on the permit as the anniversary month. Each permittee
or certificate holder shall submit an annual report to the Department on a form
approved by the Department by the last day of the anniversary month. As a courtesy,
the Department may notify the permittee with a notice of these requirements at least
45 days prior to the due date. Failure of the permittee to pay the fee may result
in the issuance of a suspension or closure order by the Department.
(c) Application fees are
not refundable.
(d) Fees may be prorated
at the applicant's request in order to adjust the anniversary date. The prorated
fee will be on the basis of one twelfth (1/12) of the annual fee per month.
(5) Closure Orders and Invalidation.
(a) The Department may issue
a closure or suspension order when it finds that an operator is conducting surface
mining:
(A) For which a permit is
required but has not been obtained;
(B) Where a site has expanded
outside the approved permit area without approval by the Department;
(C) That is in violation
of ORS 517.750 to 517.951 and the rules adopted thereunder, the reclamation plan,
or permit conditions; or
(D) Without having submitted
the annual fee.
(b) An operating permit may
be terminated if the fees and annual report form have not been received by the Department
in a timely manner, or at any time if any bond or alternate security has expired,
or has been cancelled without replacement, but reclamation obligations continue
until the site is reclaimed and reclamation is approved by the Department;
(c) A limited exemption certificate
becomes invalid upon the expiration date if renewal has not been made.
(6) Reclamation by the Department:
(a) If the permittee fails
to comply with reclamation obligations established by reclamation plan or departmental
order, the Department may perform the reclamation outlined in the reclamation plan
to the extent possible. The Department may perform alternative reclamation depending
on site conditions and any need to reclaim to the secondary beneficial use designated
in the reclamation plan.
(b) The Department may reclaim
the site to:
(A) Eliminate or minimize
hazards to the health and safety of the public;
(B) Eliminate or minimize
any pollution or erosion;
(C) Rectify abuses of natural
resources, including fish and wildlife habitat and restoring drainage;
(D) Reach a condition compatible
with local comprehensive plan and with federal and state laws.
(7) Applicability of Laws
and Rules. Permittees, at all times during the terms of the permit, are subject
to the provisions of statutes and rules in effect at that time.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.775,
517.800, 517.850 & 517.920
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0016
Total Exemptions
(1) The following excavation, processing
or grading activities are exempt from these rules and do not require the payment
of fees, posting of bonds or submittal of reclamation plans:
(a) Beds and Banks. Excavations
of materials from the beds and banks of any waters of this state are exempt from
these rules when conducted pursuant to a permit issued under ORS 196.800 to 196.900;
(b) Operations producing
less than 5,000 cubic yards of material per year and disturbing less than one acre
of land are exempt from these rules but may require a permit from DEQ and other
government agencies;
(c) Exploration. Mineral
exploration activities subject to ORS 517.702 to 517.740:
(2) Applications for a total
exemption certificate if desired shall be made to the Department using the established
form. The Department may require the applicant claiming this exemption to provide
data to establish the validity of the exemption. The data required may include but
are not limited to, the name of the operator, location of the surface mine, size
of the site, date of commencement of the surface mining, a summary of the preceding
12 months of surface mining, and an estimate of the activity for the succeeding
12 months.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.750
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1986, f. 9-19-86, ef. 9-22-86; GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI
1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0017
Limited Exemptions
(1) Limited exempt status is available
only for operations that have received and maintained a certificate of limit exemption
as provided in ORS 517.770 and 517.775.
(2) Operations under a certificate
of limited exemption are subject to the provisions in OAR 632-030-0017.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.770
& 517.775
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0020
Procedures for Applying for an Operating
Permit
Obtaining an Operating Permit:
(1) The applicant shall submit
an operating permit application as defined in OAR 632-035-0025.
(2)(a) The Department may
require any information needed to ascertain whether surface mining has occurred
or is occurring and the status of any proposed or existing permit.
(b) The applicant shall survey
the permit area, all excavation areas, setbacks, and buffers, and provide a map
that shows all areas of excavation, setbacks, buffers, buildings, haul roads, stockpiles,
wells, ponds, and floodways. Surveys must be conducted by a professional land surveyor
as required by ORS chapter 672.
(3) The application for an
operating permit must be accompanied by the fees authorized in ORS 517.800 and 517.920
as determined by the Department.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.790
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0025
Requirements for an Operating Permit
Application
(1) Prior to initiating any permitting
action the applicant is encouraged to meet with the Department and with the Department
of Environmental Quality (DEQ). These rules apply to mine areas with ore processing
facilities at or removed from the mine site, and apply to monitoring facilities.
The Department shall closely coordinate its permit requirements with DEQ so as to
avoid duplication of effort and unnecessary delay.
(2) An operating permit application
shall contain five sections. Those sections are: Existing Environment, General
Information, Operating Plan, Reclamation Plan, and Financial Security.
(a) Existing Environment:
(A) The Department may require
environmental baseline information including characterization of the following:
(i) Vegetation;
(ii) Soil/overburden;
(iii) Climate/air quality;
(iv) Fish and aquatic biology*;
(v) Wildlife* (terrestrial,
avian);
(vi) Surface and ground water;
(vii) Area seismicity;
(viii) Geology and geographic
hazards;
(ix) Mineralogy and chemistry;
(x) Noise.
NOTE: *These characterizations
may be necessary for determinations by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.
(B) Other state and federal
agencies may have similar baseline requirements. Where possible the Department shall
coordinate with agencies that have similar baseline needs, in order to avoid duplication
for the applicant;
(C) The level of detail required
by paragraph (2)(a)(A)(i-ix) of this rule may vary depending on location, size,
scope, and type of mining operation. The applicant should contact the Department
prior to baseline data collection to determine the level of detail necessary for
the applicant's proposal.
(b) General Information:
(A) The name(s) and address(es)
of all owners of the surface estate and mineral estate;
(B) The legal structure (e.g.,
corporation, partnership, individual) of the applicant;
(C) The name and mailing address
of the facility for correspondence;
(D) The name and mailing address
of the applicant's resident agent;
(E) The proposed starting date
and expected life of the proposed operation;
(F) A description of the present
land use and the proposed post-mine use of the site following mining. The proposed
post-mine use must be compatible with the local comprehensive plan as determined
by local land use planning agencies;
(G) Maps, aerial photographs
or design drawings of appropriate scale may be required by the Department. Information
that typically may be required on maps, aerial photographs or design drawings includes
but is not limited to:
(i) Permit area boundary;
(ii) Mine location;
(iii) Waste rock or overburden
stockpiles;
(iv) Processing facilities location(s);
(v) Ancillary facilities location(s);
(vi) Topsoil stockpile locations;
(viii) Typical cross sections;
(ix) Plan views and profiles;
(x) Existing watercourses and
ponds;
(xi) Interim watercourses and
ponds;
(xii) Reconstructed watercourses
and ponds;
(xiii) Post-mining topography;
(xiv) Property lines;
(xv) General ore body location.
(H) The applicant should contact
the Department for recommendations regarding scale and amount of detail required.
The applicant may be required to submit extra copies of materials to be circulated
to other agencies;
(I) Written evidence that the
surface estate and mineral estate owners concur with the reclamation plan and the
proposed use after reclamation and that they will allow the Department access to
complete reclamation within the permit area if the permittee fails to comply with
the approved reclamation plan. If the applicant can document a legal right to mine
without consent of the surface estate owner, and the applicant can demonstrate to
the Department’s satisfaction that the Department will have a right to enter
upon the permit area to complete the reclamation within the permit area if the permittee
fails to complete the approved reclamation, the Department may issue an operating
permit.
(c) Operating Plan. The Department
may require the following in an operating plan:
(A) A detailed description of
the proposed mining methods;
(B) A general list of equipment
required for operation;
(C) A general schedule of construction
and operation starting with the beginning of construction and ending with the completion
of mining;
(D) General design assumptions
plus plans profile, typical cross sections and capacities for mine facilities including
but not limited to:
(i) Impoundments;
(ii) Ponds;
(iii) Diversion systems;
(iv) Disposal systems;
(v) Stockpiles and dumps;
(vi) Pits;
(vii) Tailing disposal facilities.
(E) A plan for the conservation
of the pre-mine quantity and maintenance of the pre-mine quality of the surface
and ground water resource so as to not degrade the pre-mine use. Any discharge of
ore processing solutions off-site would be required to meet DEQ discharge permit
standards;
(F) A water budget analysis
including but not limited to:
(i) Precipitation/evaporation
data;
(ii) Make-up water needs;
(iii) Make-up water source;
(iv) Procedures to dispose of
precipitation water in excess of designed capacities, to include but not be limited
to solution treatment facilities or proposed irrigation strategies. This section
should be coordinated with procedures for seasonal closure and decommissioning of
the operation;
(v) Surface water runoff determination
for the watershed containing the mine operation;
(vi) At a minimum, projects
shall be designed to handle the 100-year, 24-hour precipitation event.
(G) Seasonal closure procedures
if applicable including but not limited to:
(i) Target seasonal storage
volumes;
(ii) Total system storage capacity;
(iii) Procedures to handle volumes
of water in excess of seasonal storage capacities;
(iv) Estimated target dates
for closure.
(H) Credible accident contingency
plan including but not limited to:
(i) Accidental discharge scenarios;
(ii) Immediate response strategy;
(iii) Procedures to mitigate
impacts to ground water;
(iv) Procedures to mitigate
impacts to surface water;
(v) Procedures to mitigate impacts
to soil/overburden;
(vi) Procedures to mitigate
impacts to living resources;
(vii) Notification procedures;
(I) Operational monitoring programs
including but not limited to, surface and ground water monitoring systems within
and outside the permit boundary, water balance of the process system and leak detection
systems. Monitoring may be required after cessation of mining or milling operations
to ensure compliance with decommissioning performance standards;
(J) Surface water management
procedures to provide for protection against contamination of ground water and the
off-site discharge of sediments into adjacent waterways;
(K) Stable storage of overburden.
A vegetative cover of overburden stockpiles may be required to prevent erosion of
the overburden storage or spoils area;
(L) Isolation and stable storage
of the topsoil or equivalent growth media material maintained for use in revegetation;
(M) Stable storage of mine dumps.
The pre-dump topography, ground preparation, method of emplacement of dump material,
height of lifts, total height and final slopes shall be described. The Department
may require design and review by a registered professional engineer or certified
engineering geologist;
(N) Stable storage of mill tailings.
Plans and specifications of all dams or impoundments proposed to be constructed
for the purpose of storing mill tailings or other materials consequent to the mining
and milling operation may be required by the Department to be prepared by a registered
professional engineer or certified engineering geologist. Plans shall be reviewed
by the Department and other regulatory agencies. Construction of such dams may be
required to be reviewed by a registered professional engineer. Procedures to prevent
pollution of air, water, and land shall be described. Depending upon the commodity
to be mined, tailings impoundments must meet various requirements of the Department
of Environmental Quality, the Health Division of the Department of Human Resources,
the Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Oregon Department of Energy Department
of Water Resources, Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Details on how each tailings disposal facility will be reclaimed must be submitted;
(O) Stable storage of mined
ore. Plans and specifications prepared by a registered professional engineer or
certified engineering geologist of all ore storage facilities may be required by
the Department. Storage facilities as used in this paragraph include but are not
limited to stored ore, ore stockpiles, storage bins and silos;
(P) Subsidence Control Plan
for Underground Mines.
(i) At the discretion of the
Department an application for underground mining activities must include an inventory
that shows whether structures, renewable or nonrenewable resources, or water resources
exist within the proposed permit area and adjacent area and whether subsidence might
damage, or interfere with the reasonably foreseeable uses of, such structures or
resources;
(ii) If the Department finds,
after reviewing the survey, that no structure or renewable or nonrenewable resources
exists or no material damage or diminution could be caused in the event of mine
subsidence, no further information needs to be provided under this subsection;
(iii) If the Department finds,
after reviewing the survey, that any structure, renewable or nonrenewable resource,
or water resource exists and that subsidence could cause material damage or diminution
of value of foreseeable use of the land, then the applicant shall submit a subsidence
control plan that contains:
(I) A detailed description of
all proposed methods of operation that may cause subsidence, including:
(I-a) The technique of ore removal;
and
(II-b) The extent, if any, to
which planned and controlled subsidence is intended.
(II) A detailed description
of the measures to be taken to prevent subsidence from causing material damage or
lessening the value or reasonably foreseeable use of the surface including:
(II-a) The anticipated effects
of planned subsidence, if any;
(II-b) Measures to be taken
inside the mine to reduce the likelihood of subsidence; and
(III) Measures to be taken on
the surface to prevent material damage to or diminution of value of reasonably foreseeable
use of the surface;
(IV) A detailed description
of measures to be taken to determine the degree of material damage to or diminution
of value of foreseeable use of the surface, including measures such as:
(IV-a) The results of pre-subsidence
surveys of all structures and surface features that might be materially damaged
by subsidence; and
(IV-b) Monitoring, if any, proposed
to measure deformations near specified structures or features or otherwise as appropriate
for the operations.
(Q) A list of and procedures
for the handling and storage of any chemicals, acid-forming materials or radioactive
material generated from or required for mining or processing at the proposed operation.
(d) Reclamation Plan. The Department
may require the following in a reclamation plan:
(A) Provisions for re-contouring,
stabilization and/or topsoil replacement of all disturbed areas;
(B) Provisions for the revegetation
of all disturbed areas consistent with future use, including seedbed preparation,
mulching, fertilizing, species selection, and seeding or planting rates and schedules.
The Department may consider revegetation successful if it is comparable in stability
and utility to adjacent analogous areas. In arid or semi-arid regions, the Department
may allow three years of growth prior to evaluation of revegetation. Otherwise revegetation
will be evaluated after one growing season. Vegetation test plots and chemical/physical
soil and subsoil analysis may be required to ensure establishment feasibility. If
applicable the applicant must include a plan for the control of noxious weeds;
(C) Provisions for protection
of public health and safety;
(D) Provisions specifying adequate
setbacks;
(E) Procedures for all stream
channels and stream banks to be rehabilitated so as to minimize bank erosion, channel
scour, and siltation. Disturbance within the beds and banks of streams may require
a permit from the Department of State Lands;
(F) The Department may require
the applicant to provide for the prevention of stagnant water;
(G) Final slopes shall be stable;
(H) Reclaimed cut banks shall
not have slopes exceeding 1-1/2 horizontal to 1 vertical (1-1/2:1). The Department may
grant exceptions for steeper slopes where the applicant can document that the slopes
will be stable and if the steeper slopes:
(i) Blend into adjacent terrain
features; or
(ii) Existed prior to mining;
or
(iii) Are consistent with approved
subsequent beneficial use.
(I) Fill slopes shall be 2:1
or flatter unless steeper slopes are approved by the Department. Technical data
supporting steeper slope stability may be required by the Department;
(J) Procedures for the salvage,
storage and replacement of topsoil or acceptable substitute;
(K) Provisions for the establishment
of 3:1 in-water slopes to six feet below water level for permanent water impoundments.
Reasonable alternatives may be approved by the Department when they are consistent
with the reclamation plan. For example, safety benches no more than two feet below
low water level and five-feet wide may be substituted for the slope requirement
where the Department determines that sloping is not practical;
(L) Visual screening of the
proposed operation may be required, if economically practical, when the operating
area is visible from a public highway or residential area. Techniques for visual
screening include, but are not limited to, vegetation, fencing or berms;
(M) Procedures for the removal
or disposal of all equipment, refuse, structures and foundations from the permit
area. Permanent structures may remain if they are part of an approved reclamation
plan;
(N) Provisions to maintain access
to utilities when a utility company right-of-way exists;
(O) Procedures for decommissioning
mine facilities including but not limited to:
(i) Procedures for ore storage
sites to meet decommissioning performance standards for protection of surface and
ground water quality and living resources and to achieve revegetation requirements;
(ii) Procedures for tailing
disposal facilities to meet decommissioning performance standards for long-term
stability, protection of surface and ground water quality and living resources and
provide for attainment of site land use objectives;
(iii) Procedures for solutions
to meet decommissioning performance standards for discharge, containment and evaporation,
or other ultimate disposal methods;
(iv) Removal of all process
chemicals;
(v) Appropriate isolation or
removal of waste material;
(vi) Monitoring system by which
the success of the proposed reclamation can be measured for bond release.
(e) Financial Security:
(A) The applicant shall submit
a permit bond or other adequate financial security for the purpose of ensuring completion
of the reclamation plan, other requirements of ORS 517.750 to 517.951, and all rules
and permit conditions. The financial security amount shall be determined and transmitted
to the operator after comments by reviewing agencies on the proposed reclamation
plan have been received and evaluated. All land shall have Department-approved and
accepted financial security prior to disturbance. The Department must determine
the amount of the bond or other security required by estimating the cost of reclamation
if the Department were to perform the reclamation;
(B) Factors the Department will
consider in determining the amount of security may include, but are not limited
to, the following:
(i) Supervision;
(ii) Mobilization;
(iii) Costs of equipment;
(iv) Equipment capability;
(v) Costs of labor;
(vi) Removal or disposition
of debris, junk, equipment, structures, foundations and unwanted chemicals;
(vii) Reduction of hazards such
as: in-water slopes, highwalls, and landslides or other mass failure;
(viii) Disposition of oversize,
rejects, scalpings, and overburden;
(ix) Backfilling, contouring
or re-grading and topsoil replacement;
(x) Draining, establishment
of drainage, and erosion control;
(xi) Soil tests;
(xii) Seedbed preparation, seeding,
mulching, fertilizing, netting, tackifiers or other stabilizing agents;
(xiii) Tree and shrub planting;
(xiv) Fencing;
(xv) Liability insurance;
(xvi) Long-term stabilization,
control, containment or disposal of waste solids and liquids;
(xvii) Final engineering design;
(xviii) Costs of remedial measures
identified to clean up releases of contaminants associated with mining, processing
or beneficiation that are reasonably likely to cause a threat to public health,
safety, or the environment.
(C) Cost estimate information
shall be derived from sources such as:
(i) Comparable costs from similar
projects;
(ii) Catalog prices;
(iii) Guides and cost estimates
obtained from appropriate government and private sources;
(iv) Operator estimates;
(v) Equipment handbooks;
(D) Seed mixes, fertilizer rates,
and other requirements will be derived from departmental experience combined with
advice from such sources as the Oregon Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation
Service, Oregon State University Extension Service, the Department of Transportation,
the Bureau of Land Management or United States Forest Service and private sector
experts;
(E) The security amount shall
be based on the cost of reclamation at the time of an inspection plus the predicted
disturbance within the next 12 months. Security amounts shall not account for construction
of structures or comparable features such as housing developments or industrial
construction even if included in a reclamation plan;
(F) The Department, in consultation
with DEQ, shall make a determination of whether a threat to public health or the
environment is reasonably likely to exist from a concentration of metals or minerals
resulting from mining, processing or beneficiation at the proposed project.
(G) The applicant may be required
to submit reclamation/decommissioning cost estimates and/or estimated costs for
mitigation, reclamation and/or disposal associated with a credible accident for
consideration by the Department;
(H) No permit shall be issued
or renewed until all financial security for a surface mining site is on file with
the Department. Financial security must be maintained until operations have ceased,
reclamation has been completed, and all decommissioning performance standards have
been met. Financial security must be provided by surety companies authorized to
do business in Oregon and acceptable to the Department. A security submitted for
multiple surface mining sites under the provisions of ORS 517.810(4) must be accompanied
by a list showing the permits covered by the security, the amount of the bond applicable
to each surface mining site, and the number of acres bonded at each site.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517

Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.810,
517.870, 517.890, 517.915 & 517.950

Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1986, f. 9-19-86, ef. 9-22-86; GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88 ;
GMI 3-1990, f. & cert. ef. 8-9-90; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0030
Department Action on Operating Permit
Application
(1) The Department shall approve or
deny a complete application in writing within 120 days of receipt. If an application
is incomplete, the Department shall notify the applicant of that fact in writing
within 30 days of receipt and the Department will specify the deficiencies therein.
Within 60 days of receipt of a notice of incompleteness the applicant may appeal
the determination of incompleteness or may resubmit the application with deficiencies
corrected.
(2) The Department will submit
the draft operating permit to local planning authorities and other appropriate public
agencies for review. If the operating permit cannot be reviewed and accepted or
rejected by the Department within 120 days after receipt the Department will notify
the applicant.
(3) If the Department refuses
to approve the operating permit for any reason, the Department will notify the applicant
in writing within five days of refusal stating the reasons for refusal and identifying
additional requirements as may be prescribed by the Department for inclusion in
the reclamation plan. Within 60 days after the receipt of such a deficiency list
or permit conditions, the applicant shall comply with the additional requirements
prescribed by the Department or file a written notice of appeal of the decision
to the Department in accordance with OAR 632-035-0056. Failure to comply with the
additional requirements or file a notice of appeal within the 60-day period, unless
an extension is granted by the Department, may result in the application for an
operating permit being denied.
(4)(a) The Department will
approve the applicant's operating permit if the application adequately provides
for reclamation of surface mined lands and complies with the applicable statutes
and these rules;
(b) If the Department finds
that reclamation cannot be accomplished it shall not issue an operating permit.
The applicant shall be notified in writing within five days of the decision.
(5) The Department may attach
conditions to the operating permit. These conditions may be added to reflect special
concerns that are not adequately addressed in the reclamation plan and fall within
the scope of these rules. The permittee may appeal these conditions by filing a
written notice of appeal in accordance with OAR 632-035-0056.
(6) The approval of the reclamation
plan and the issuance of the operating permit by the Department do not constitute
a finding of compliance with statewide planning goals or local regulations implementing
acknowledged comprehensive land use plans. The operating permit may be issued prior
to the local land use agency making such a determination. The permittee is responsible
for obtaining local land use approval before commencing the proposed surface mining
activity. When issuing the permit, the Department will inform the permittee that:
(a) Issuance of the operating
permit is not a finding of compliance with the Statewide Planning Goals (ORS 197.225)
or the acknowledged comprehensive plan; and
(b) The applicant is responsible
for compliance with the requirements of all other agencies including land use determination
by local government and compliance with the Statewide Planning Goals before commencing
surface mining under the approved operating permit.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.740,
517.810 & 517.925
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0035
Modification of an Operating Permit
Modification may be initiated at any
time by the permittee or by the Department. An operating permit may be modified
by approval of the Department after timely notice and opportunity for review as
provided by ORS 517.830(4) in order to modify the requirements so that they comply
with existing laws, or to accommodate unforeseen developments that may affect the
reclamation plan as previously approved. Expansion of an operation beyond original
permit area or significant intensification of activity may require recirculation
to interested agencies for additional comment.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.740
& 517.800
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85; GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert.
ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0040
Maintaining an Operation Permit
(1) Within 30 days after completion
of construction and prior to operation, the permittee shall submit a signed registered
engineer's or certified engineering geologist's report, complete with accurate drawings
and specifications depicting the actual construction. Alternatively, if the construction
proceeded in substantial compliance with the approved plans and specifications,
a statement to that effect may be submitted by the registered professional engineer
or certified engineering geologist. In either case, the permittee shall make specific
arrangements for inspection by the Department during construction or installation
of mine facilities.
(2)(a) After issuance of
the permit and prior to mining, the permittee must mark the boundaries for all excavation
areas, stockpiles, setbacks, and buffers. Unless otherwise authorized by the Department
in writing, the marking must be accomplished by placing clearly visible markers,
approved by the Department, at a distance of no more than 200 feet on center. The
Department may grant extensions for marking areas that are subject to a phased operation
plan. The Department may waive marking requirements or allow greater distances where
topography or other conditions make marking unreasonable. Any extension or waiver
must be approved by the Department in writing.
(b) Operators of previously
permitted operations with a total disturbed area in excess of 20 acres must survey
the permit area and provide a map that complies with the requirements in subsection
(2)(a) of this rule. The survey must be completed and submitted to the Department
for review upon adoption of these rules and within 12 months after the permit anniversary
date. Upon receipt of a written request from a permittee, the Department may grant
extensions to this requirement for good cause shown. Extensions must be authorized
by the Department in writing. Within three months after the Department notifies
the permittee that the survey is adequate, the permittee must mark boundaries in
the permit area as provided in subsection (2)(a) of this rule.
(c) The Department may require
any operator of a previously permitted operation that is not subject to subsection
(2)(b) of this rule to provide a survey or marking or both if the Department determines
that surveying or marking is needed for effective or efficient implementation or
enforcement of the permit, reclamation plan, Department rules or the Act. The permittee
will be notified of such requirement in writing and will be allowed a reasonable
time to accomplish the survey or marking requirements.
(d) The Department may require
a permittee to update the surveys or maps required under this rule if the operation
is subject to a notice of violation under ORS 517.860, a suspension order under
ORS 517.880, or a significant modification of the operating permit.
(3) Subject to the limitations
in ORS 517.862, an operating permit issued by the Department will remain in effect
for the period of time necessary to mine and reclaim the land described in the permit
and subject to the requirements of the law. Each operating permit is to be renewed
prior to the anniversary date by submitting the required annual fee, any other accrued
fees, and filing the annual report. As a courtesy, the Department may notify the
permittee by mail at least 45 days prior to the anniversary date of the permit and
provide the necessary renewal forms and fee schedule for permit renewal. In cases
of nonrenewal, a second notice may be sent prior to issuance of a closure order.
The permittee shall maintain an operating permit until mining and reclamation, including
revegetation (if required), have been completed.
(4)(a) If the Department
determines from inspections conducted pursuant to ORS 517.850, or from any other
source, that the operation is not in compliance with the approved operating permit,
ORS 517.750 to 517.900, or the rules adopted thereunder, the Department shall give
written notice of noncompliance to the permittee;
(b) The permittee must begin
rectifying all deficiencies within 30 days of receipt of the notice of noncompliance
as required in ORS 517.860(1), or file a written appeal to the notice of noncompliance
in accordance with OAR 632-035-0056. If the permittee appeals the notice within
30 days of receipt, the Department will not issue a closure order or revoke the
permit pending the appeal, except in cases of reasonable probability of danger to
human life, property, water resources, or the environment. The Department will provide
the permittee a written statement of the specific facts leading to that finding
and corrective action for the elimination of such danger.
(c) The Department will notify
the permittee in writing within ten days of verification of compliance.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.740
& 517.800
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0045
Obtaining Bond Release
(1) The permittee shall notify the Department
when the reclamation has been completed.
(2) The Department shall
inspect the reclaimed site. If the Department determines that the permittee has
fulfilled the requirements of the approved reclamation plan or decommissioning performance
standards, the bonds or other securities will be released. The Department may authorize
bond or other security reduction if the reclamation or decommissioning is partially
completed.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.740
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0050
Appeals
(1) Prior to the initiation of a formal
appeal of any departmental order, notice, or other action, made pursuant to ORS
517.750 to 517.950 or the rules adopted thereunder, the applicant or permittee shall
first request that the State Geologist informally review and resolve the matter.
The State Geologist will provide a written decision within 20 days of receipt of
such an informal request. If the State Geologist is unable to resolve the informal
request, the applicant or permittee may request a contested case hearing. Appeals
must be filed within 30 days of receipt of the State Geologist's written decision
except as otherwise provided by ORS 183.435.
(2) An applicant or permittee
requesting a hearing for consideration of any appeal shall state the reasons for
requesting the hearing and the objections to the Department's order, notice, or
other action.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.890
& 517.992
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f. &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85; ; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert.
ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0055
Penalties
(1) Any landowner or operator who conducts
a surface mining operation, for coal or a metal-bearing ore, without a valid operating
permit as required by ORS 517.750 to 517.955 shall be punished, upon conviction,
by a fine of not more than $10,000.
(2) Violation of any provision
of ORS 517.750 to 517.955, or of any rule or order made pursuant to ORS 517.910
to 517.950, or of any conditions of an operating permit, is punishable, upon conviction,
by a fine of not more than $10,000.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.990
& 517.992
Hist.: GMI 2-1982, f &
ef. 8-13-82; GMI 3-1984, f. & ef. 12-12-84; GMI 2-1985, f. 11-19-85, ef. 11-20-85;
GMI 2-1988, f. 5-12-88, cert. ef. 5-2-88; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14
632-035-0060
Civil Penalty
(1) Applicability. This section of these
rules applies to the imposition of civil penalties under ORS 517.992(2) for violations
of statutes, rules, orders and permit conditions not related to a chemical process
mine.
(2) Definitions. For purposes
of this section of these rules:
(a) "Compliance Schedule"
is a written plan that establishes specific actions and time tables for remedying
a violation. The compliance schedule may require the violator to propose specific
actions that are acceptable to and approved in writing by the Department. The compliance
schedule also may be used for informal disposition of proceedings through stipulation,
agreed settlement, consent order or default;
(b) "Notice of Civil Penalty"
is a written statement that includes the elements of a notice of violation and also
imposes a civil penalty;
(c) "Notice of Violation"
is a written warning that includes a short and plain statement of the facts establishing
a violation and reference to the statute, rule, order, or permit condition that
has been violated;
(d) "Outside a permit condition
regarding boundaries, setbacks, buffers, or the placement of surface mining materials"
means a violation of any permit condition that establishes or regulates the physical
or geographic limits on mining operations. “Surface mining materials”
means soil, rock, ore, minerals or overburden. It does not include discharges of
water.
(e) "Violation" is any violation
of ORS 517.700 to 517.950, or any rule, order, or permit adopted under those statutes,
provided:
(A) The statute, rule, order
or permit does not relate to a chemical process mine; and
(B) The violation relates
to an operation that is being conducted without a permit, outside of a permit boundary,
or outside of a permit condition regarding boundaries, setbacks, buffers or the
placement of surface mining refuse.
(3) Notice of Violation:
(a) If the Department finds
that a violation does not pose an immediate threat to human health, safety or the
environment, it may issue a notice of violation. The notice must give the violator
a specified period of time not less than 72 hours in which to correct the violation;
(b) The notice of violation
may include a compliance schedule and the notice of violation may include a requirement
that a violation not be repeated within a specified period of time;
(c) If the violation is corrected
within the specified period and any requirement imposed under subsection (b) of
this section is satisfied, the Department shall not impose a civil penalty.
(4) Notice of Violation —
Service. A notice of violation must either be served personally or sent by registered
or certified mail. If the notice is served by mail, the period specified for compliance
must not commence until four business days after the date the notice has been mailed.
(5) Notice of Civil Penalty.
If the Department finds that a violation poses an immediate threat to human health,
safety, or the environment, or that the violator has not complied with the requirements
contained in a previously issued notice of violation, the Department may issue a
notice of civil penalty.
(6) Notice of Civil Penalty
— Form and Service. A notice of civil penalty must be in a form and shall
be served in the manner required by ORS 183.415.
(7) Appeals — Consolidation.
Any person issued a notice of violation or a notice of civil penalty shall have
the right to a contested case hearing under ORS 183.413 to 183.470. The hearing
must be requested in writing within 20 days of the date of service. A notice of
civil penalty may be issued even though a contested case hearing is pending on the
underlying notice of violation. However, if timely requests for hearings are received
for a notice of violation and a notice of civil penalty arising out of the same
violation, the hearings may be consolidated.
(8) Civil Penalty —
Classification:
(a) Civil penalties imposed
under ORS 517.992(2) must be coordinated with other agencies, to the extent practical,
to avoid duplication of penalty for the same violation and be in accordance with
the following schedule:
(A) Class 1. Violation that
poses no potential threat to human health, safety, or the environment: no more than
$1,000 per day;
(B) Class 2. Violation that
poses a potential threat to human health, safety, or the environment, or a repeat
Class 1 Violation: no more than $3,000 per day. Potential threats to human health,
safety or the environment include, but are not limited to, actions that increase
instability or erosion, or cause an unsafe condition at the site;
(C) Class 3. Violation that
poses an immediate but remediable threat to the environment or a repeat Class 2
violation: no more than $6,000 per day. “Immediate but remediable threat to
the environment” means that without a quick response, and considering such
factors to include but not be limited to slope and erodibility, damage will occur
and upon remediation there will be no lasting effect of that damage.
(D) Class 4. Violation that:
(i) Poses an immediate threat
to human health or safety;
(ii) Causes actual human
injury;
(iii) Poses a threat to the
environment that is immediate and not remediable;
(iv) Causes actual damage
to the environment; or
(v) Is a repeat Class 3 violation:
$1,000 to $10,000 per day.
(b) Each day of a continuing
violation may be treated as a separate violation for purposes of imposing a civil
penalty;
(c) In the event of a conflict
between the text of this rule and the language or operation of the attached schedule,
the language in the text of the rule controls.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 517.090 & 517.840
Stats. Implemented: ORS 517.992
Hist.: GMI 1-1994, f. &
cert. ef. 7-21-94; DGMI 1-2014, f. & cert. ef. 4-2-14

The official copy of an Oregon Administrative Rule is
contained in the Administrative Order filed at the Archives Division,
800 Summer St. NE, Salem, Oregon 97310. Any discrepancies with the
published version are satisfied in favor of the Administrative Order.
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2015