The Federal government is in the business of sending money to the states to clean-up old coal mines. Although the states were the beneficiaries of the mines, it does seem reasonable that the national government at least lead a helping hand in cleaning up the mess the mine owners left for future generations. And overall it is not a huge amount of money, relative to total Federal spending.
The federal government plans to send roughly $485 million to 28 states and tribes in 2012 to clean up abandoned coal mines, with $150 million of that going to
, which produces more coal than any
other state. Wyoming
Okay, that also seems reasonable. But then there is this. It seems
Wyoming has largely cleaned up its abandoned
mines, and largely with the help of Federal largesse, so the law has this condition.
But a provision in the new highway law would prevent any state that has been certified as having addressed its most polluted or dangerous mines from receiving more than $15 million in any year.
is the only state that has this
certification and receives more than $15 million a year. Wyoming
is dominated by Republicans and
Conservatives (think Dick Cheney, if you can) and so one would think they are
happy to turn away the money and save the taxpayers from funding that is not
needed. Think again. Wyoming
Yes, these fiscal Conservatives are livid that
Wyoming is not receiving
money to clean up coal mines when they do not need money to clean up coal
mines. And anybody wonder what they have
used the money for in the past?
|Funny, It Does Not Look Like a Clean Up Coal Mine?|
largely addressed many of the issues related to abandoned underground and
surface mines, it has been allowed to use the money for just about any project
state officials approve. A Wall Street Journal article in April described some
of the projects budgeted with Wyoming Wyoming's
abandoned-mine money, such as $10 million for renovations to a basketball arena
at the . University
But that didn’t stop a Wyoming Senator from getting all hot and bothered.
"The manner in which the [abandoned-mine] program was amended is outrageous," said Sen. John Barrasso (R., Wyo.). "This provision was written behind closed doors, without a hearing, debate or any input from the public, the State of
or its elected
Gosh, wonder what the Hypocritical Wing of the Republican Party is going to say when real cuts arrive?