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05/13/2021 02:10 PM
Pennsylvania State Senate
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=S&SPick=20210&cosponId=34671
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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: February 12, 2021 11:15 AM
From: Senator John T. Yudichak
To: All Senate members
Subject: Resolution Urging the U.S. Congress to Reauthorize the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund (AMRF)
 
I will soon be reintroducing a resolution urging the U.S. Congress to reauthorize the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund (AMRF). 

For over 100 years, Pennsylvania has helped fuel the nation with its deep reserves of coal beneath our feet. Now, the Commonwealth bears the scars from the mining efforts that changed its landscape. At least 44 of the state’s 67 counties now grapple with the remains of abandoned mines.

Pennsylvania’s abandoned coal mines can be environmentally hazardous, physically dangerous and economically damaging to communities that are already struggling to meet the needs if their residents.

This resolution urges the Congress of the United States to reauthorize the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund (AMRF), which is scheduled to sunset in 2021. The AMRF has been instrumental in providing the resources to help states reclaim and restore abandoned mine lands. Pennsylvania receives approximately $25 million annually to clean up these areas and to help restore the quality of our waterways that have been impaired by acid mine drainage.

The measure also urges the federal government to raise the mandatory distribution for minimum program states to $5 million.

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has more than 5,000 abandoned mine sites encompassing more than 189,000 acres. With help, those sites can become assets to our state once again, providing jobs, recreational opportunities, and natural beauty.

Last year, the resolution (SR 191) passed the Senate but did not receive consideration in the House. Previous co-sponsors: FONTANA, ARGALL, GORDNER, COSTA, YAW, PITTMAN and TARTAGLIONE.

Please join me in asking the federal government to continue to fulfill its obligation to Pennsylvania and other coal states through at least 2036. Should you have any questions, please contact my office at (717) 787-7105.