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Central California District
Release Date: 12/06/11
Contacts: David Christy , 916-941-3146 or  
  Gary Sharpe , 707-468-4000  
News Release No. CC-12-16

Public Meeting Planned on Draft Alternatives for Chicago & Research Abandoned Mercury Mines Cleanup

The Bureau of Land Management will hold a public meeting on Dec. 13 for review and comment on the draft Engineering Evaluation and Cost Analysis (EE/CA) for the Chicago and Research abandoned mercury mines, located near Middletown in Lake County.

The EE/CA will identify the BLM’s preferred alternative for the response actions to be taken at the site.

The meeting at the South Lake Fire Protection District office, 20109 State Highway 175, Middletown, will begin at 7 p.m. and is expected to last until 9 p.m.

“The meeting will give the public an opportunity to look at the problem of abandoned mercury mines and the alternatives available to reduce or eliminate those problems at these particular mines.  Participants in the meeting will hear a presentation about the site and alternatives available for remediation.  There will be opportunities to ask questions and provide written comments,” said Gary Sharpe of the BLM Ukiah Field Office.

The Chicago and Research mines site is located in the Dry Creek Mining District southwest of Middletown. The Helen Mine was worked from 1874 to 1922 for mercury ore. The Chicago Mine was located in the 1860s and worked intermittently until 1968 when it was quit-claimed to the owner of the Research Mine. The Research Mine was located in 1929 and operated intermittently until it closed in 1978.The mines site includes approximately 20 acres of BLM-administered public land. 

The administrative record is now available for public review. The record contains all documents, including the draft EE/CA, that the BLM has used to support its decisions on appropriate response actions taken at the site so far.  The administrative record is available for review during normal business hours, Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., at the BLM’s Ukiah Field Office, 2550 N. State St. in Ukiah. 

The BLM strongly encourages interested members of the public to comment, in writing, on the documents, especially the EE/CA, contained in the administrative record.  All comments must be received in writing on or before Jan. 6, 2012, to be considered and responded to in the final EE/CA decision.  The comment period begins today.

Comments can be provided at the public meeting, through the BLM’s website at, by fax to (707) 468-4027, or by mail to BLM Ukiah Field Office, 2550 N. State St., Ukiah, Calif., 95482. 


Central California District   2800 Cottage Way, Sacramento, CA 95825   

Last updated: 12-07-2011