Sacramento, CA – The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) has taken emergency actions to shore up a loophole in the suction dredge mining moratorium. (Click here for an earlier story on that moratorium.) The CDFW is proposing an emergency amendment to the moratorium which bans vacuum mining.
CDFW Spokesperson Jordan Traverso says, “The regulations last year had a very specific definition of exactly what suction dredge mining is. Some gold miners changed one piece of equipment and how they used it so that technically they weren’t suction dredge mining and not therefore breaking the law. Now, we’re closing that loophole and fixing that part of it so it’s applies to any vacuum equipment being used.”
Traverso says the next step is to submit those changes to the Office of Administrative Law (OAL) by Monday, June 17. Once the OAL posts the notice on its webpage (Click here for link), the public will have five days to comment. If you have any questions about the proposed emergency action, please contact Craig Martz, CDFW Regulations Unit Manager, at (916) 653-4681. You can also submit your questions by clicking here.
Traverso says once the loophole is closed it will allow wardens to actively cite those breaking the law.