Monday, October 28, 2013

New supervisor wants input before taking mining side

Comments:  Most people in our county and all of Virginia supports keeping the ban.  Regulations of any kind cannot stop Mother Nature or Human Error.  Clean water is a right, mining ruins water all over the world!  As far as the Cooch, hopefully he will lose the election, how can he tell us how to run our county when he takes monies from companies.....!!!!  Keep the Ban!

Posted: Monday, October 28, 2013 7:01 pm | Updated: 7:23 pm, Mon Oct 28, 2013. New supervisor wants input before taking mining side


Elton W. Blackstock, the new member of the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors, said he would rather hear from residents before determining whether Virginia should lift the moratorium on uranium mining and milling.
“I want to talk to the citizens in my community before I take a stand on the issue,” Blackstock, who represents the Staunton River District, said during an interview Monday.
Blackstock said he opposes uranium mining and milling until rules and regulations are written by the state and can be reviewed by residents. You cannot take a stand on something when there are no rules for it, Blackstock said.

Virginia Uranium Inc. seeks to mine and mill a 119-million-pound uranium ore deposit at Coles Hill, six miles northeast of Chatham. VUI wants uranium mining regulations written, thereby lifting the ban by default.

The board of supervisors appointed Blackstock last week to replace the late Marshall Ecker, who died Sept. 26, until a special election is held in November 2014. Whoever wins the election would serve the remainder of Ecker’s term, which ends in 2015.

Blackstock has attended events held by pro- and anti-mining interests to learn more about the issue, he said.

“I’m trying to educate myself,” Blackstock said.

However, there is very little a locality can do as to whether uranium mining and milling will be permitted or regulated, Blackstock said, pointing to a recent opinion from the Virginia attorney general’s office.

Supervisors passed a resolution in January urging legislators in the General Assembly to keep the state’s moratorium on uranium mining and milling.

Blackstock said he is more concerned with finding a replacement for County Administrator Dan Sleeper, who retired unexpectedly in early September than with uranium mining.
Crane reports for the Danville Register & Bee.