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Correspondence from the President of OAU

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 By Michael Miller

08/25/2017  2:44PM

Friends,
The MSHA hearing early August went very well. ALJ William Moran has high ranking in Washington DC. This was our third hearing together and the best. The judge understood the issue and plainly saw that the inspector is REDACTED. The briefs are due October 23 and each side has until Nov 6 to respond. I expect a decision before Christmas.

Before the first day of the public hearing, the judge accepted my invitation to see the mine. The Secretary of Labor representatives were also invited but declined. The underground trip went well. Most people find the underground awesome and unfamiliar. Perhaps the decade’s long fight with illegal inspections and MSHA enforcement is closing. A favorite sayings, “Truth like gold rests at the bottom.”

It should be obvious now that evidence proves that over the past decade, our Company received many unwarranted citations. As an expert noted “Now that you have someone with experience as an underground miner, your citations dramatically dropped. The mine and operation are the same, the difference are inspectors.”

For the first 2017, quarter we had one silly (on our part) citation. The miner took off his belt, took a pee in the mine and walked out without the self-rescuer on his belt.. This never would happen years ago because each miner’s light was on his belt and hard hat. Now the light attaches directly to the hard hat: could be tough if the miner knocks his hat down a stope.

The second quarter ending June (20-17) brought us one citation…on me. My self-rescuer stays in my truck and I forgot to give it to Miner Reid to weigh, which must be done quarterly.

The current quarter (third) was almost citation free. A disagreement over non electric detonators led to non-serious and non-substantial citations. Our goals are zero citations in the future. It will happen if the agency assigns well rounded, experienced, underground miners to inspect our operation.

An experienced authorized representative for the federal Secretary of Labor of underground experience can evaluate it a hazard when he sees it. So do our miners.

The mine made front page August 8 with a story about the upcoming hearing. The judge brought me the paper Tuesday when he came to Alleghany. Good timing. The reporter made mistakes, not serious except he reported we have twenty miners. He took a video with his phone. Surprisingly good. It is on our face book but also at: the union.com (Grass Valley paper) web site. Check it out. Input Sixteen to one video. Then: Between a rock and a hard place. Spread the word.

Last week Rob Campbell, our water expert, came to the mine with a crew to fly a drone over the property. He is preparing a report about the Toxic Mine Waste requirement by the water agency. He agrees with me that we do not have any mine toxic waste. We have products: road rock and masonry stone. He said he has never seen water so pure coming from a mine or a more beautiful operating mine site.

Rob brought a geophysics professor and his two college age boys with him. I took Rob's group down the winze and across the 1300 level and up the ballroom trail. He was in awe of the quartz vein and seemed smart. Once out of the mine, we talked about plate tectonics, geology and when will someone add a new twist to why the Sixteen ranks with top richest gold deposits in the world. Gold is here and we just have to find it.

Our crew is doing grand reconstruction of the 49 winze, our main access to the lower levers of the mine. The 49 winze project is on schedule and the unwatering is ahead of schedule. We will hold the water where it is until safe access below the 1700 level is achieved

Before the water gang arrived in Alleghany that morning, I spent two hours in our map room visiting old reports and maps thinking: how can I meet a fresh geologist. Rob knows Eldridge Moores, a leader in plate tectonics. He still lives in Davis, where he taught. Born in 1938, and in good health, Rob plans to bring him up. I met him years ago. He visited the mine and was fascinated by our deposit. The fresh conceptual idea escalates calcite as an important indicator of the gold pathway along small faults. I doubt anyone doubts gold remains nearby the open levels and stopes; but where, oh where do we run our drills to mine it. GPR etc. technology has yet to prove itself of economic value and geology has. Okay fresh geologists; give me a call (530) 287-3223.
 By David I

08/01/2017  11:29PM

Excellent letter to Secretary of Labor. Hope it will be acted upon.
 By Michael Miller

07/13/2017  1:45PM

Secretary of Labor R. Alexander Acosta July 12, 2017
200 Constitution Ave NW
Washington DC 20210

Dear Secretary Acosta,

I write you from my position as an underground gold miner, President of a 106 year old operating and producing small Company and a spokesman for American miners here in California and beyond. Our industry (Metal Mining) needs your attention as much or even more than the coal mining industry. A primary threat to this dying endeavor is the enforcement of An Act of 1977 and subsequent standards which are regulated under your duty by Mines Safety Health Administration (MSHA). While some standards are outdated our primary concern is with inexperienced federal inspectors’ interpretation of actual underground mining.

I wrote President Trump while the position of Secretary of Labor was vacant encouraging him to understand the importance of his Secretary of Labor. I am hopeful after reading your quote to senators, “As a former prosecutor, I will always be on the side of the law and not any particular constituency.” The law is not guiding enforcement in our mines. It has disappeared under layers of management’s misdirection.

Mining is not fifty years ago when miners suffered death and unnecessary dangers in exploiting the vital natural resources needed in the United States. The time is long past for MSHA to return to the practice of recognition that “the first priority and concern of all in the coal or other mining industry must be the health and safety of its most precious resource—the miner.” Sec. 2(a) of An Act.

Selecting your Assistant for MSHA management may prove a difficult proposition. As I wrote President Trump, I am not looking for a job. I have a good one yet have a sense of responsibility to my country to assist you regarding MSHA. I support your mission:

The Department of Labor's mission is to foster and promote the welfare of the job seekers, wage earners, and retirees of the United States by improving their working conditions, advancing their opportunities for profitable employment, protecting their retirement and health care benefits, helping employers find workers, strengthening free collective bargaining, and tracking changes in employment, prices, and other national economic measurements.

There is widespread talk about the need for our Country employment to grow. There is talk much less, about our Country’s weak position in natural resource production. What is not talked about is the professional and cultural loss the United States is seeing in these natural resource extraction industries in California, and I assume elsewhere. For national security now and for future generations, encouragement or at least no hostility should be the mantra for 2017. I am an elder now but when I entered the natural resource industry, I was a neophyte. The elders taught me tricks of the trade, such as cracking hard quartz with a double jack or placing a two ton locomotive back on the track by myself. It is the same for the logger. Our skills will be lost to neophytes in the not-to-distant future as our industries cease to prosper.

Please direct someone from your agency, preferable in the Western District, for me to contact or have them contact me. Signed letter will be posted to you in US Postal System.


Sincerely yours,
Michael M. Miller
mmeistermiller@gmail.com
(530) 287-3223

Attached are two letters:
To President Trump Staff
To Dear ALJ and SOL

...

 

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

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(530) 287-3223      
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