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A controversial company wants to expand mining in Missouri. The public can comment

A controversial mining company is looking to expand its operation underneath the Mark Twain National Forest. The public can comment on the petition but must limit comments to the proposed expansion.

The Doe Run Company currently operates 3,800 acres of mineral mines in Reynolds and Shannon counties and wants to expand its lease to add another 1,500 acres.

The Bureau of Land Management prepared an environmental assessment and is taking public comment on the expansion proposal until Oct. 24.

“This analysis is about adding these additional acres to the current leases,” said Stephanie Carman, district manager for BLM Eastern States’ Northeastern States District. “Because of that, we are not looking at the leasing as a whole, that was done previously and will be done again under our regular 10-year review period.”

Doe Run has been under fire from environmentalists for decades, and has also been involved in tax disputes with local school districts in recent years.

Carman said the agency will read and take all public comments seriously, but the most useful and relevant comments will specifically address the technical aspects of the lease expansion proposal.

“We appreciate any additional information. We don’t know everything, so this is an opportunity for the public, additional partners, to identify things that we may not have been aware of or may not have considered,” Carman said.

“For example, if there is a bird species present in this area that has been documented that we are not aware of, that kind of information would be very important.”

The 30-day comment period is now open. The public can comment online and has the option to upload supporting documentation. The site also includes directions on how to file comments by mail.

Follow Jonathan on Twitter: @JonathanAhl

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Jonathan is the General Manager of Tri States Public radio. His duties include but are not limited to, managing all facets of the station, from programming to finances to operations. Jonathan grew up in the south suburbs of Chicago. He has a B.A in music theory and composition from WIU and a M.A in Public Affairs Reporting from The University of Illinois at Springfield. Jonathan began his journey in radio as a student worker at WIUM. While in school Jonathan needed a summer job on campus. He heard WIUM was hiring, and put his bid in. Jonathan was welcomed on the team and was very excited to be using his music degree. He had also always been interested in news and public radio. He soon learned he was a much better reporter than a musician and his career was born. While at WIUM, Jonathan hosted classical music, completed operations and production work, was a news reporter and anchor, and served as the stage manager for Rural Route 3. Jonathan then went to on to WIUS in Springfield where he was a news anchor and reporter covering the state legislature for Illinois Public Radio. After a brief stint in commercial radio and TV, Jonathan joined WCBU in Peoria, first in operations then as a news reporter and for the last ten years of his time there he served as the News Director. Jonathan’s last job before returning to Tri States Public Radio was as the News Director/ Co-Director of Content for Iowa Public Radio. During Jonathan’s off time he enjoys distance running, playing competitive Scrabble, rooting for Chicago Cubs, listening to all kinds of music and reading as much as he can. He lives in Macomb with his wife Anita and children Tommy and Lily.