The permitting and public comment processes for mining permits are defined in the Land Reclamation Act, 444.772 and 773, RSMo. A short summary of how it works is provided below.

Application Process
A mining permit application, which may include forms, fees, maps and bonding, is received and reviewed by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources' Land Reclamation Program (LRP). Deficiencies and/or errors are identified by LRP staff and are communicated to the operator who is responsible for correcting them. After all corrections are received by LRP staff and no additional corrections are needed, the application is deemed complete by staff and the operator is given a notice to proceed with the public notice process.

Public Notice Process
The applicant must advertise the proposed mine site once a week for four (4) consecutive weeks in a newspaper that is located in a county where the mine site is located that is certified to publish public notices pursuant to 493.050. In addition, the applicant shall send certified mail to the governing body of the counties or cities in which the proposed mine site is located and to the last known addresses of all first tier record landowners. These first tier landowners are those whose property is within two thousand six hundred forty feet (2,640'), or one-half (1/2) mile from the border of the proposed mine plan area, and do not have a legal relationship with either the applicant or the owner of the land upon which the mine plan area is located. For questions about the definition of a legal relationship or about how to proceed, please contact LRP staff at 573-751-4041.

During the above mentioned four (4) consecutive weeks of newspaper advertisement and the additional fifteen (15) days following the last publication date, any member of the public can respond with comments or request a public meeting. All comments are answered to address concerns, and will be considered when the LRP director makes a decision to either issue or deny the permit application. Letters requesting a public meeting will result in the operator holding an informal public meeting to address concerns. MoDNR representatives attend this meeting to record the meeting and to answer questions regarding laws or regulations.

Within six (6) weeks after the public meeting is held, the director makes a decision to either issue or deny the permit. The director may impose reasonable conditions on the permit. The director’s decision and meeting summary titled, Attachment I, is provided to the operator and those that wrote in or signed in at the public meeting. Any party adversely affected by the decision may be entitled to pursue an appeal before the Administrative Hearing Commission (AHC). The affected party has thirty (30) days after the date of the director’s decision to file an appeal to the AHC. Instructions about how to appeal the decision are provided in the director’s decision.

Hearing Request Process
The director’s decision can be appealed to the AHC as provided by 621.250.3 RSMo: “If you were adversely affected by this decision, you may be entitled to pursue an appeal before the administrative hearing commission. To appeal, you must file a petition with the AHC within thirty (30) days after the date this decision was mailed or the date it was delivered, whichever date is earlier. If any such petition is sent by registered mail or certified mail, it will be deemed filed on the date mailed; if it is sent by any method other than registered mail or certified mail, it will be deemed filed on the date received by the AHC.” The mailing address of the AHC is: Administrative Hearing Commission, PO Box 1557 Jefferson City, MO 65102.

Hearing Process
The AHC is a neutral, independent administrative tribunal. The AHC conducts the proceedings and makes a recommendation to the Missouri Mining Commission (MMC) to either issue or deny the permit.

Final Decision
The MMC will determine whether to issue or deny the permit on the AHC’s recommendation. This decision is subject to judicial review by the court of appeals district with territorial jurisdiction in the county where the mine is located or is to be located.

Additional Quarry Permit Applications
In addition, permit applicants should also investigate to learn if the following permits are applicable from other MoDNR programs:

Air Pollution Control Program – For questions, contact the construction permit unit at 573-751-4817.

Water Protection Program – For questions, call 573-751-1300.

Forms, Applications, Permit, Manuals and Other Documents.