|Justice owns The Greenbrier.|
"U.S. Office of Surface Mining and Reclamation spokesman Chris Holmes said the company contacted the federal agency Monday – in Tennessee, not Kentucky, and not to let it know about the problem but to say the company was moving people out of Tennessee to help people in Kentucky with a flooding problem," Bruggers writes. "The Justice-owned company, Kentucky Fuel Corp., was cited by state regulators for having an overflowing diversion ditch that sent mud and water down a hill, damaging six homes, officials said. Citations included alleged violations involving sediment control, off-permit disturbance, failure to notify, failure to pass water quality and a diversion ditch failure. Multiple other homes had mud and debris on their property, and a county road was also muddied."
West Virginia coal and hotel operator Jim Justice, the state's Democratic nominee for governor, is asking a Kentucky judge for more time to reclaim strip mines in eight Eastern Kentucky counties.
"I am OK with what they are proposing," state Natural Resources Commissioner Allen Luttrell told Franklin Circuit Court Judge Thomas Wingate yesterday. But he said Justice's mines "have been out of time for months, and months, and months," and steady progress is needed. Another hearing will be held July 13.
Wingate told Justice representative Billy Shelton that the court needs progress reports every two weeks on their progress. "Shelton balked," reports James Bruggers of The Courier-Journal. "He had suggested monthly reports, according to state officials, who said past reports by the company were misleading: One company would start a bulldozer and let it idle in place, not doing any work, and they'd report that as reclamation activity." Wingate told Shelton, "All you have to do is take a picture. I could do that with my iPhone."
|One of the highwalls that need reclaiming|