Editor, Casa Grande Dispatch:
Policymakers around the nation have long understood that the public relies on copper and other minerals for their health and well-being. Minerals, like copper, enable people to affordably benefit from electricity in our homes and businesses and for wiring in electric vehicles, cellphones and computers. Copper is the foundation of the economy, spurring technology advancements, fueling jobs and promoting economic prosperity.
In fact, the Legislature and governmental agencies, regardless of political party, have long taken a thoughtful, environmentally driven strategy in supporting minerals production in Arizona. At the same time, mining companies have focused on developing new technologies to lower emissions, enhance safety standards and to work with local communities to ensure adverse mining operations are mitigated.
But the Florence Town Council continues to demonstrate an incredible lack of vision, leadership and commitment to jobs by funding trial lawyers to battle Florence Copper. In its latest municipal budget, the council allocated $600,000 for “outside” litigation in their job-killing efforts. Why not spend $600,000 on revitalizing downtown?
The extractives industry, as a whole, has spent more than $9 billion on developing technology solutions designed to lower emissions and protect land and water resources. These efforts are accelerating capabilities for mining in the United States in order to meet the growing demand for all sorts of minerals. Industry initiatives, including the technological advances being used locally by Florence Copper, are helping society move toward a low carbon future. Something we all support.
The production and use of copper are hardly public nuisances or cause for further litigation. Copper is essential to modern life and is essential to the future of Florence.
The Town Council, by continuing its adversarial relationship with Florence Copper, has already cost Florence taxpayers millions of dollars in litigation costs. When will the madness end?