Agency mulls selling public land for mine project



BOISE, Idaho (AP) _ Federal land managers are considering
selling off more than 1,100 acres of land in southeastern Idaho's
phosphate patch to accommodate a new mining project.

The Bureau of Land Management is proposing to sell the tract to
give the J.R. Simplot Co. acreage to build a mine waste storage
facility for its Dairy Syncline Mine.

BLM officials say this is the first time the agency has
considered selling public land as part of a phosphate mining
proposal. The parcel is next to the Caribou-Targhee National Forest
about 10 miles east of Soda Springs.

But environmentalists are already raising red flags about the
land deal.

Greater Yellowstone Coalition spokesman Marv Hoyt says putting
the land in private hands restricts their ability to influence the
project to make it safer for the environment.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
APNP-04-15-10 1109MDT<

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