Title: To modify the requirements applicable to locatable minerals on public domain lands, consistent with the principles of self-initiation of mining claims, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep Rahall, Nick J., II [WV-3] (introduced 10/6/2005)      Cosponsors (15)
Latest Major Action: 10/18/2005 Referred to House subcommittee. Status: Referred to the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources.


Federal Mineral Development and Land Protection Equity Act of 2005 - Sets forth guidelines for: (1) mineral exploration and development on public domain lands; and (2) exclusive right of possession and use of the claimed land for mineral activities by holders of mining claims executed under this Act.

Subjects unpatented mining claims, mill sites, and tunnel sites to an annual claim maintenance fee payable to the Secretary of the Interior in lieu of assessment work requirements contained in the general mining laws and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976.

Exempts from such fee any claimants holding ten or fewer mining claims who elect to perform the assessment work.

Requires locators of unpatented mining claims, mill sites, and tunnel sites located after enactment of this Act to pay a location fee.

Establishes forfeiture penalties against holders of mining claims for noncompliance with this Act.

Prescribes guidelines for royalty payments applicable to production of locatable minerals, including mineral concentrates or products derived from locatable minerals. Cites federal lands which are not open to location of mining claims.

Requires the Secretaries of the Interior and of Agriculture, respectively, to review the suitability of lands for mineral activities.

Requires: (1) a permit to engage in mineral activities on federal land that may cause a disturbance of surface resources; (2) an operations permit to carry out any activity greater than casual use; (3) financial assurance to cover lands and affected waters that may require restoration or treatment of effluent as a result of mineral activities; and (4) operation and reclamation standards.

Permits state or local law or regulation more stringent than the requirements of this Act.

Establishes the Abandoned Locatable Minerals Mine Reclamation Fund in the Treasury.

Amends the Mining and Minerals Policy Act of 1970 and the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980, to modify the responsibilities of the Secretary of Agriculture.

Requires the Secretaries of the Interior and of Agriculture to: (1) establish and collect user fees; and (2) inspect and monitor mineral activities for compliance with certain environmental protection requirements.

Authorizes citizens' civil action suits for noncompliance with this Act.

Repeals the Building Stone Act and the Saline Placer Act.

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