(1) If the department finds the applicant eligible, and it does not have information readily available which would preclude issuance of a permit to the applicant for mining in the area proposed, it shall:
(a) determine the minimum data requirements necessary to meet the provisions of ARM 17.24.1225;
(b) select the services of one or more qualified laboratories, contractors, and/or consultants to perform the required work. A copy of the contract or other appropriate work must be provided to the applicant.
(2) The department shall inform the applicant in writing if the application is denied and shall state the reason for denial.
(3) The granting of assistance under ARM 17.24.1221 through 17.24.1228 must not be a factor in decisions by the department on a subsequent permit application.