(1) The department may approve a proposed alternative postmining land use if all of the following criteria are met:

(a) the requirements of 82-4-232(8) and (9), MCA;

(b) the proposed postmining land use is compatible, where applicable, with existing local, state or federal land use policies or plans relating to the permit area. Demonstration of compatibility with land use policies and plans must include, but is not limited to:

(i) written statement of the authorities with statutory responsibilities for land use policies and plans submitted pursuant to ARM 17.24.821(2); and

(ii) as applicable, obtaining any required approval, including any necessary zoning or other changes required for land use by local, state or federal land management agencies. This approval must remain valid throughout the strip or underground mining operations;

(c) specific plans are submitted to the department that show the feasibility of the postmining land use as related to projected land use trends and markets and that include a schedule showing how the proposed use will be financed, developed, and achieved within a reasonable time after mining and how it will be sustained. These plans must be supported, if appropriate, by letters of commitment from parties other than the operator;

(d) as applicable, provision of any necessary public facilities is ensured as evidenced by letters of commitment from parties other than the operator as appropriate, to provide the public facilities in a manner compatible with the plans submitted;

(e) plans for the postmining land use are designed under the general supervision of a licensed professional engineer, or other appropriate professional, to ensure that the plans conform to applicable accepted standards for adequate land stability, drainage, and aesthetic design appropriate for the postmining use of the site;

(f) the use will not involve unreasonable delays in reclamation; and

(g) appropriate measures submitted by state and federal fish and wildlife management agencies to prevent or mitigate adverse effects on fish, wildlife, and related environmental values and threatened or endangered plants have been incorporated into the plan.


History: 82-4-205, MCA; IMP, 82-4-232, MCA; NEW, 1980 MAR p. 725, Eff. 4/1/80; AMD, 1989 MAR p. 30, Eff. 1/13/89; TRANS, from DSL, 1996 MAR p. 3042; AMD, 1999 MAR p. 811, Eff. 4/23/99; AMD, 2004 MAR p. 2548, Eff. 10/22/04; AMD, 2024 MAR p. 258, Eff. 2/10/24.