April 23, 2017 

Water and Arsenic: which came first?


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 By Michael Miller

12/13/2016  6:02PM

Dear Forum participants,
When you have some time, check this out. Pass it along to others as our operation moves forward towards increased gold production and excitement in 2017.

December 12, 2016
Hello Everyone,

Wanted to let you know that our radio tour into the 16 to One Gold Mine in Alleghany is now complete. Go to the following URL (Resources tab in the Operation Unite website and look under the Meet Your Mentor subsection:

You will find the radio show and two video clips from our day's activities.

I had a wonderful time recording our experience in the mine and appreciate each and every one of you. Mike, thanks again for opening up the mine to Meet Your Mentor and the time that you shared with us. Ronit, hope we added even more excitement and focus to your geologic pursuits.

Happy Holidays everyone and have a wonderfully prosperous new year.


Stephen J. Baker
Hydrogeologist, California/Washington PG, HG

December 13, 2016
Dear Steve,
Nice work. I clicked the web site and your video magically appeared. Others should find the two videos an interesting trip. I did.
 By bluejay

07/21/2016  4:08AM

The EPA limits arsenic in tap water to 10 parts per billion. But levels of this metal may be up to 100 times higher in well water in some areas of the country. Even so, an arsenic level as high as 1,000 parts per billion may not be something to get upset about. Arsenic has actually been approved in high dilution as a safe homeopathic remedy in the U.S. for decades with no ill effects.
But if testing shows your well water contains dangerous levels of arsenic, you should take measures to decontaminate it via aeration or reverse osmosis.

Always on the side of science,

Marc S. Micozzi, M.D., Ph.D.
Insiders' Cures
 By cw3343

08/13/2015  12:11PM

Just wondered if anyone was following the horrible mistake that the EPA performed in Colorado when trying to clean up an old mine. Instead of blaming the EPA (who admitted fault), the L.A. Times had a headline that had something to do with "the problem of hard rock gold mines".

Props to the crew of the 16 to 1 over the years in dealing with this type of negative portrayal, which is pretty much nonstop in California.
 By Michael Miller

02/24/2015  7:37AM

Sierra county Superior 'Court Judge signed the stipulated agreement last week. Company is informed by its
Attorney that the issue is finished.
 By Michael Miller

02/09/2015  12:28PM

Fred, to your question below:

 By fredmcain

02/09/2015  5:04AM


Monthly payments? Monthly payments for what?


Fred M. Cain
 By Michael Miller

02/08/2015  11:51AM

Electric power was lost Friday in our area due to high wind more than rain. Alleghany was last to get it back, sometime early this morning. I opened my email and read the two following letters. Though it is news worthy.

From the California district Attorney’s office: Hi Klaus. The Board approved the settlement in closed session today, and the Executive Officer signed the Stipulated Judgment. I’ve attached a fully executed copy, and I’ll send the original to the Court.

From Klaus, Company attorney: Hi Mike: The settlement is done – see below. You’ve dodged a potentially fatal bullet for the Mine, but now have the headache of finding the money for monthly payments until you find that big pocket of gold to finally pay everyone off!

Sierra County superior Court scheduled a court appearance dater on February 27, 2015 at 8:30 am for a hearing on the settlement. Other people are happier about this settlement than I. Perhaps additional revelations will better inform the regulators in California that there are reasons why California was rated as the lowest state in the union for its regulation enforcement against business. On the positive side of these matters, the Chicken Little advocates and doomsday criers have bent their pic. Our governments with elected, appointed and advocates must stand back and look at the positive environmental results that have occurred. Remember the Cayuga River in Cleveland on fire? I do and was there on a visit. We’ve come a long way. I just think some people need to bitch!
 By Michael Miller

02/02/2015  4:07PM

Remember discussing the water permitting process and the public meeting to be held? It will take place Thursday February 5, 2015 at 10:30am. The staff proposed a permit with significant reductions in testing, which relates to less costly a process. Water is a hot topic in California. Last January was the driest January recorded. San Francisco had zero rain. Sacramento had .01 of an inch. Alleghany did better but not by much.

California and all states must meet federal water standards. States may write more restrictive regulations up to a point. California is one of those states. You may remember that after a national review, five states rated a “F” for hostilities towards business via regulations. Only one state got an “F” minus. Yes, it was my home state, California. This is not something our governments should be proud of or gloat about. I believe that changes are occurring. The pendulum swung beyond reason and may be moving towards a healthier environment for our state. Working with the staff over the past two years is better than working with staff in 1998, 2003 and 2008, when the permits were reviewed. I remain argumentative about two areas that seem to be in conflict. We have fifteen minutes to make our Sixteen to One points to the Board.

Below is my response to a new mandatory requirement called an Infeasibility Analysis. It will be discussed on Thursday.

February 2, 2015
Gayleen Perreira
Senior Water Resources Control Engineer
NPDES Permitting
Sacramento Office

An infeasibility Analysis for Original Sixteen to One Mine, Inc. (Company) for underground water leaving an old adit named the 21 tunnel is speculative to evaluate as to complying with the revised limits for drinking water by the federal government. The Company spent much time and money with various suggested methods for public water districts, private water systems and home owner drinking water to reduce arsenic in drinking water. The results caused discoloration and the release of iron into the water. Site conditions contributed to these results. The discharge is remote, difficult to access in winter and inches above the intermittent Kanaka Creek during normal seasons.

With the assistance of the California Water Boards, the Company will continue to explore and test methods to reduce the level of natural arsenic to or below the federal level for drinking water. Here are four ways: (a) introduction of additional water for dilution; (b) pump water for irrigation; (c) identify abnormal isolated influx of arsenic and treat underground; (d) locate natural runoff underground at higher elevations and eliminated flow into Kanaka Creek.

It is believed that the water sources are directly the result of storm water seeping into fractures very close to the old tertiary gravel contact with bedrock. This area has been inaccessible for over eighty years. An exploratory expedition through old workings will be considered as a possibility to catch the water before it enters the 35 miles of underground levels. Perhaps an area of highly mineralized arsenopyrite will be found and can be isolated from surface water runoff, thereby eliminating native arsenic entering surface water.

The Company estimates that two years are required to explore the actual property in order to establish the best management practice for a reduction of arsenic. The Company will continue to explore the scientific or technological industries for a better solution than those known today. Considering the various paths to follow, it is reasonable to expect a significant process that will permanently bring the Company’s property in compliance within drinking water standards, if required, will occur before or in 2020.

Michael Meister Miller,
 By Michael Miller

10/22/2014  12:45PM

from the water boards: submit comments on the Tentative NPDES Permit of Public Hearing for Sixteen to One Mine to

 By Michael Miller

10/21/2014  12:40PM

Please take note to read the entries under this topic back to 10/20/14 at 3:41PM.

Reply to Fred: Anyone can comment. The only questionable over limit element is arsenic. Your question about sorely needed water makes sense, common sense. Unfortunately California’s regulatory situation in 2014 is illogical, outdated. Years ago when the environment was under attack from growth, drastic changes were necessary. The California legislature and executive agency leaders are too preoccupied to bring necessary environmental revisions. The levels of arsenic threaten no animal life. The loss of an important industry (gold extraction) threatens Americans.

I just finished a phone conference with Central Water Quality staff regarding the tentative permit. They were very helpful. Now it is the American public’s turn to help. What happens in Alleghany pushes an unpopular agenda. Every shareholder has will be affected by these over-reaching state or federal requirements. I encourage your notification to others and taking the opportunity and time to move our country in a positive direction. It is our choice.

Here is what I learned about ‘designated parties’. Letters will be reviewed by an executive committee with a lawyer. The request must explain the basis for status as a designated party and in particular how the person is directly affected by the discharge. If you read this website and are not a shareholder, you can still qualify. There are always letters from environmental individuals and groups lobbying the water board to thrash productive people (ranchers, farmers, loggers, miners, manufacturers). I know of some who are pathetic souls. Objection in favor of the environment pumps a low ego. Facts and evidence don’t matter. It is not necessary for you to attend the meeting. Letters from all designated parties will go to board members in advance of the meeting. I hope there are hundreds. The water staff has a direct email address for designated party requests, which I will post as soon as I receive it.

I will present evidence to the Board that the presumed adverse effects of the ground water are overstated. It is important to point out that the property owner does not treat or impact the quality of the water flowing through its land. This is an unavoidable situation. We could be pear farmers growing in Alleghany. Would the pear farmer be required to obtain a water permit and conduct numerous water analyses? A logical response to water regulators is to ask, why doesn’t every parking lot land owner test the water runoff and pay a permit fee? Perhaps it is our business, mining. The existence of the Sixteen to One mine causes zero nuisance or harm to all beneficial users of water. The law regulating waters in America were passed to protect water, a vital element for life. I support responsible enforcement of governmental regulations. Anything you can do helps overcome ignorance from otherwise smart and informed people.
 By fredmcain

10/21/2014  9:29AM


I have a couple of questions about this.

First of all, if we do not live in California, how can we help? I would want to do what I can anyways.

The second question I have is what kind of contaminants, if any, are in the water in the deepest part of the mine?

I keep hearing and reading about this devastating drought and water shortages in the state. Then something occurred to me. With water in short supply, wouldn’t this be a good time to “dewater” the mine down to the 3,200-foot level? Maybe that water could be sorely needed downstream as long as there are no contaminants in it. Unfortunately, I am not a hydrologist so maybe I’m way off base here.

What do you think?

Fred M. Cain
 By WK

10/20/2014  6:40PM

It sounds like the water regulators have a desk, but not enough useful work to justify their pay. Accordingly they unwittingly overreach and make trouble. To other bureaucrats this looks like they are actually working. This is a widespread problem in all levels of government.
 By Michael Miller

10/20/2014  3:41PM

HELP HELP HELP HELP …If you can find the time.

The Notice of Public Hearing below has significant meaning for the Sixteen to One mine and all the gold mines in the Western United States. Before any gold mining occurred, the earth formed mineral rich deposits. An associate element to gold is arsenic. Arsenic is broadly distributed and has positive effects on life. It is also a killer in heavy concentrations. Few of these are in inorganic mineral-rich lands. While I have done a great deal of research and held numerous discussions with California’s water staff about the regulations impacting our important industry, their adjustment in attitudes remains marginal, when it comes to a permit for operating. YOU CAN HELP!

Read the notice below and take special interest in the paragraph below “The designated parties for this hearing are as follows:”. Please apply to become a designated party. Many businesses are closing or driven from California. The world knows California has the most egregious unfriendly arbitrary, unnecessary, unreasonable and at times unlawful regulations in the United States.

The major work of preparing a permit falls on the shoulders of the water staff. The heavy players in perpetuating the injustices that have occurred to the sixteen to One mine and many others both in the mining business and non-mining businesses is well documented. The heavy hand of what…Fear? Cowards? Bully? Greed? Stupidity? Jealousy? Ignorance? Disinterest? Laziness? Rests with the politicians and their appointed Boards. The decision regarding the classification of ground water passing through our property will be given to the California Regional Water Quality Control Board Central Valley Region in February. The PUBLIC must send notice of participation by November 3, 2014 no later than 5pm in writing.

Instruction are in the Public Notice following this entry. I offer suggestions but recommend you read this topic for background of the issues. People unfamiliar with the Sixteen to One should have an interest in just what is taking place in California. It might be taking place in your state as well. I’m not saying that the regulators are evil, bad or any of the fear, greed etc. cited above. Maybe it is apathy or a lack of motivation to change and correct misguided behavior. You can contact me as well. I will be writing more this week on ideas. MMM
 By Michael Miller

10/20/2014  2:54PM

11020 Sun Center Drive #200, Rancho Cordova, CA 95670



Original Sixteen to One Mine, Inc. (Discharger) is the owner and operator of the Sixteen to One Mine, located at 506 Miners Street, in Alleghany, California. The Sixteen to One Mine is an operating hard rock gold mine. Untreated mine drainage from the Sixteen to One Mine is discharged at Discharge Point 001 (at the 21 TunnelPortal) to Kanaka Creek, a water of the United States, tributary to the Middle Yuba, Yuba, Feather, and Sacramento Rivers. •The proposed Order contains new effluent limits for antimony, cadmium, copper, iron, lead, manganese, and nickel, and continues existing effluent limits for arsenic and other constituents to protect the beneficial uses of Kanaka Creek.

The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board (Central Valley Water Board) will consider issuing new Waste Discharge Requirements for the facility. •

A public hearing concerning this matter will be held during the Central Valley Water Board meeting scheduled for:


5/6 February 2015
Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board Room
11020 Sun Center Drive, #200
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

The designated parties for this hearing are as follows:

• Original Sixteen to One Mine, Inc. Representatives

Only designated parties will have these rights: to call and examine witnesses; to introduce exhibits; to cross-examine opposing witnesses; to impeach any witness; and to rebut the evidence against him or her. All other persons wishing to testify or provide comments are interested persons and not designated parties. Such interested persons may request status as a designated party for purposes of this hearing by submitting such request in writing to the Central Valley Water Board no later than 5:00 p..on 3 November 2014. The request must explain the basis for status as a designated party and in particular how the person is directly affected by the discharge.



Persons wishing to comment on this noticed hearing item shall submit testimony, evidence, if any, and/or comments in writing to the Central Valley Water Board no later than 5:00 p.m. on
3 November 2014. Written evidence or comments submitted after 5:00 p.m. on
3 November 2014 will not be accepted and will not be incorporated into the administrative record absent a ruling by the Chair. Any party requesting to submit late materials must demonstrate good cause for the late submission, and the Chair must find that accepting the late submission will not prejudice the Central Valley Water Board or any Designated Party. ••

All designated parties and interested persons may speak at the Central Valley Water Board meeting, and are expected to orally summarize their written submittals. Oral testimony and cross examination will be limited in time by the Board Chair.

Anyone having questions regarding the hearing item should contact Elizabeth Thayer at (€)16) 464,4671 or beth.thayer@waterboards.ca.gov. Interested parties may download the tentative Order and related documents from the Central Valley Water Board's Internet website at http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/centralvalley/board_decisions/tentative_orders/. Copies of these documents can also be obtained by contacting or visiting the Central Valley Water Board's office at 11020 Sun Center Drive, #200, Rancho Cordova, California 95670-6114 weekdays between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. The final meeting agenda will be available at http://www.waterboards.ca.govfcentralvalleyfboard_infofmeetingsf at least 10 days before the meeting. The agenda will provide the specific date the Board Meeting will be held for this item, indicate the anticipated order of all agenda items, and may include staff revisions to the proposed order{s).

The procedures governing Central Valley Water Board meetings may be found at Title 23, California Code of Regulations, Section 647 et seq. imd are available upon request. Hearings before the CentralValley Water Board are not conducted pursuant to Government Code section 11500 et seq. The procedures may be obtained by accessing http:f/www.waterboards.ca.govflaws_regulationsf. Information on meeting and hearing procedures is also•available on the Central Valley Water Board's website at http://www.waterboards.ca.govfcentralvalleyfboard_infofmeetingsfmtgprocd.shtml or by contacting any one of the Central Valley Water Board's offices. Questions regarding such procedures should be directed to Ms. Kiran Lanfranchi-Rizzardi at (916) 4644839.

The hearing facilities will be accessible to persons with disabilities. Individuals requiring special accommodations are requested to contact Ms. Kiran Lanfranchi-Rizzardi at (916) 464,4839 at least 5 working days prior to the meeting. TTY users may contact the California Relay Service at 1-800-735-2929 or voice line at 1-800-735-2922.

Please bring the above information to the attention of anyone you know who would be interested in this matter.

KENNETH D. LANDAU, Assistant Executive Officer

2 October 2014
 By bluejay

08/17/2013  1:12PM


Excellent presentation, I couldn't agree with you more.

The world's best learning and projecting computer run by Martin Armstrong stated on April of this year, 2013, the backs of the entrenched politicians has been broken. The transition to, hopefully, much better ones will be back dropped with much screaming and yelling from them as they reach out and attack the people during this period of their demise.

During the period the excessive amount of government employees will significantly be sized down and my guess is the revenue collecting ones will go last which could be
the regulators. Government has imploded itself at its own hands as they regularly do. These guys don't have hardly anything under control, mostly everything is out-of-control and they won't tell you but know it if they are smart. Some of them actually believe their own BS which makes them dangerous to us.

Get ready because "Squeeze The People" will be their mantra until they get kicked out of office.
 By cw3343

08/16/2013  9:43PM

Mike has a good point. Regulators are gonna regulate, it could be as simple as that.

Sacramento has become a bloated, fat, and out of control myriad of too many agencies, boards, commissions, working groups, departments, bureaus, and their ilk. There are a lot of middle manager types that have to strive to come up with new rules and regulations in order to justify their own department and/or job security. If they do not constantly come up with new nonsensical preposterous ideas they might get downsized or merged into another entity.

Why do they do this? BECAUSE THEY CAN. The only real power they have is their ability to say NO, and they use it as much as possible.

How to solve the issue? I have no idea - but it may help to find someone who is very familiar with the upper-level State procedures and process. This individual would understand the inner workings of State bureaucracy and how to work with it, and not necessarily against it.
 By fredmcain

08/13/2013  1:55PM


I still tend to think that there might indeed be some pro-business editors at the Wall Street Journal who might be interested in your story. I have subscribed to the WSJ for years and have often seen things like this published.

Just recently they had an article on the California water crisis. The farmers aren't getting enough irrigation water because some kind of turbines in the dams are threatening some kind of small fish on the endangered species list.

I really and truly believe you have a great story that illustrates how our system has run amok.

Fred M. Cain
 By Michael Miller

08/13/2013  11:30AM

Yes, there are paths to take to rid not only the Sixteen from unwarranted duress but enlighten our much needed public agencies to view the surroundings they regulate in a 21st century manner. Unfortunately, I cannot identify the most effective path to dispose of the problem.

My answer to your question is for all those aware of the issues is:THINK HARD INSIDE AND OUTSIDE THE BOX.
 By fredmcain

08/13/2013  10:45AM


Good post. But my question is, what can we shareholders (or other interested parties) residing outside California do to help with this? Is there anything we can do?

Fred M. Cain
 By Michael Miller

08/12/2013  12:34PM

Your theories have merit. Many informed or casually curious people are confused about the nature of the legal problem we face. Who is driving this corrupt legal claim for $2 million in damages to Californians? What groups maintain, advocate and see social progress by shutting down our resource industries?

The issue is not arsenic pollution and degradation to the environment of Kanaka Creek. Kanaka Creek is as healthy as most high Sierra Nevada Mountain water courses. Those polluted are due to human waste from too much poop or industrial toxic waste unnatural to the surroundings. So what are the issues driving our Sacramento government employees to sue Original Sixteen to One Mine, Inc. for $2,000,000?

I believe it was driven by angry or jealous or guilty or ignorant or malicious or arrogant individuals both working at the water agencies or not. Their actions are in the past and date back to 1993. But this is 2013, and the claims of legal misbehavior were filed in Sierra County Superior Court May of 2009.

My theory has merit. There is a serious problem in California’s execution of the law. I am sure that some individuals now employed in Sacramento realize that pursuing this claim for $2 million is not right, not good behavior or even beneficial to Californians. But they may suffer job relate economic consequences if expressing this view.

They should be saying, “Wow, something is wrong here. Yes, thirteen monthly reports were not filed, but this defendant should not have been required to perform those 1,400 tests per year. The reason for the initial requirement was due to the milling of ore, which produced a waste product. Once the mill ceased operation in 1998, the testing requirements should have been reduced to meet the actual circumstances at the mine site. Not only did my fellow water bureaucrats fail to adjust the testing in 1998, but they failed to adjust the requirement in the following two permit renewals (2003 and 2008). They fucked up and now I am asked to protect their errors.”

So the problem is: how can a poorly reasoned lawsuit be set aside if you work as a governmental public servant. For this result, I visited Governor Jerry Brown and met with one of his chief advisers. I also made myself available to the Chairman of the Water Board and staff. I do not suggest that all public servants realize the mistake and want to settle this aggression. I feel that those I spoke with sensed the inequity of the law, its definition and more, but nothing has changed!

Those angry or jealous or guilty or ignorant or malicious or arrogant individuals smell the blood of a wounded wolf. So I am asking you to find the mechanism to stop these predators and aid those who know this lawsuit is wrong. Will the wolf survive? Ask Los Lobos. Let's address the causes and call them out. Let’s expose this inane behavior and allow them to say, “Well, a mistake was made. I for one want to correct it. Set aside this lawsuit right now.”

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© 2017 Original Sixteen to One Mine, Inc.
PO Box 909
Alleghany, California 95910

(530) 287-3223      
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