They’ve lost their mine

New Era operation officially a bust

The New Era Mine, located in the foothills east of Butte College, has made headlines for nearly two years now, since its operation was approved in 2008 by the Butte County Board of Supervisors.

Neighbors who were opposed to the project, which had grown substantially since its original use permit was granted in 1981, filed a lawsuit against the county—and won. In October Superior Court Judge Steven Benson ordered that approval nullified, saying the county had violated numerous laws by not requiring a new permit and environmental review of the project. It was immediately shut down.

Just last week (Dec. 15) Benson pounded the final nail in the mine’s coffin, filing his judgment and writ that gives the Board of Supervisors 90 days to rescind their approval of the mine’s 1981 permit and restricts use of the site to reclamation. He also says the opponents, collectively the Dry Creek Coalition, can file a motion to recover costs and attorneys’ fees.