Using the APMA & State-wide Bond Pool within the BLM Approval Process
The following list presents the general steps you (in red) should follow to create a complete description of your proposed claim activity, and how you gain ultimate approval. The list also outlines the typical procedures that ADNR and BLM take in processing your proposed activities on BLM managed federal lands. Contact your local Field Office should you have any questions.
- Read the BLM Instructional Supplement to the APMA and refer to BLM Regulations.
- Describe your proposal, using the APMA and BLM’s APMA Supplements to provide appropriate detail.
- Contact your local BLM Field Office to discuss your proposal.
- File the APMA and applicable BLM Supplements with ADNR. The APMA and BLM Supplements will be scanned by ADNR and electronically distributed to the BLM and other agencies.
- Once the BLM receives and begins work on the submitted application, the BLM will perform a completeness review, ensuring that the proposal is fully described. BLM will determine the activity level of your proposal: Casual Use, Notice, or Plan of Operations level. If needed, the BLM will request that you provide more information.
- Once the completeness review begins, the BLM has the following time constraints within which to request more information - within 15 days for Notices and within 30 days for Plans of Operation.
- When your application is accepted as complete by BLM, the different activity levels dictate the following steps.
a. Casual Use activity: Casual Use requires no additional steps to evaluate the proposal. You are approved to commence the Casual Use activity described in your completed application.
b. Notice (Notice) and Plan of Operations (Plan) level operations: BLM staff will review your completed application to determine if the proposal is sound and if the risks associated with the execution of your proposal warrant mitigating measures such as site specific stipulations, a site visit, or further study. All Notices and Plans require that the applicant provide the BLM with a financial guarantee of reclamation, prior to beginning any of the proposed activities.
For the Notice and Plan of Operations activity levels:
- It is at this point that Plans of Operation undergo a detailed environmental review, to determine compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). This analysis may result in modifications to your Plan or additional requests for information.
- Your Notice or Plan will then be reviewed to determine if the Alaska State-wide Bond Pool is an acceptable form of financial guarantee. Use of the bond pool is not automatic.
a. If your proposal is determined ineligible to use the State-wide Bond Pool, then:
You may be requested to complete a Reclamation Cost Estimate (RCE) specific to your Notice or Plan. The RCE is intended to provide a more accurate estimate as to your reclamation-related financial liability. The RCE will be reviewed and a final determination will be made whether the state-wide bond pool is acceptable or if another form of financial assurance will be required.
b. If your proposal is determined eligible to use the State-wide Bond Pool, then:
The BLM will sign and date the Bond Calculation portion of your APMA. Note: a bond secured through the state-wide pool is not valid for BLM managed lands until it has been signed by the BLM.
- Once you have Notice acknowledgement or an approved Plan, and BLM has verified that an appropriate reclamation bond or other assurance is in place, you may begin operations. To verify that your Bond is in place, go to: http://sdms.ak.blm.gov/acres/acres_menu, and enter your casefile number in the Case Abstracts, or search Case Retrieval by Name, Claim Name, or geographic reference. The case abstract will list “Bond Received” if the financial assurance has been accepted. You must ensure that “Bond Received” is listed for the current calendar year.
- The BLM will conduct periodic inspections to ensure you are working within your authorization. BLM periodically reviews your file to ensure reclamation bonding remains adequate.
BLM Supplemental Guidance to the Placer Mining Application (APMA)
BLM Instructional Supplement to the APMA
Supplement A - Performance Standards Checklist
Supplement B – Water Management Plan
Supplement C – Placer Reclamation Plan
Supplement D – Seasonal or Temporary Closure Plan
Title 43 CFR - Subpart 3715 - Regulations for Use and Occupancy Under the Mining Laws
Title 43 CFR – Subpart 3809 – Regulations for Surface management of Mining Claims under the General Mining Laws
Title 40 CFR – Subpart 109 – Regulations for Oil Removal Contingency Plans
Reclamation Bonding and Reclamation Cost Estimates (RCEs)
To download – BLM Reclamation Cost Estimation Review Guidelines
To download - BLM Nevada's Mining Reclamation Bonding Guidelines