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February 28, 2012
In Reply Refer To:
3500/3600/3800 (320) P
Instruction Memorandum No. 2012-072
Expires: 09/30/2013
To:                   All Field Officials
From:               Assistant Director, Minerals and Realty Management
Subject:           Bureau of Land Management 2012 Reclamation and Sustainable Mineral
                        Development Awards Program – Extension of Filing Deadline for Submitting
                        Nominations                                    Due Dates: 03/30/2012; 04/27/2012
Program Areas: Locatable Minerals (3800), Mineral Materials (3600), and Solid Leasable Minerals (3500).
Purpose: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Reclamation and Sustainable Mineral Development Awards program, initiated in April 2003, recognizes solid mineral operators who have made exemplary contributions to solid minerals (non-coal) development. This Instruction Memorandum (IM) provides information relating to the 2012 awards program, including deadlines relating to the submission and processing of nominations. The five award categories are The Hardrock Mineral Environmental Award, The Hardrock Mineral Community Outreach and Economic Security Award, The Hardrock Mineral Small Operator Award, The Hardrock Mineral Director’s Award, and The “Fix A Shaft Today!” Award. The purpose of the awards is to recognize work in any of the three components of sustainable development: environmental health, social responsibility, and economic security.
Policy/Action: The Department of the Interior (DOI) created the Reclamation and Sustainable Mineral Development Awards program to showcase some of the finest examples of responsible mineral resource development. The award winners embody our understanding of sustainable development—development that meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet future needs. 

The BLM state offices are requested to assist the Washington Office in publicizing this award program and in receiving and processing the nominations.

Brochures announcing the 2012 awards program and the February 10 deadline for submitting nominations were previously distributed to state offices.  The extended deadline for submitting nominations to the BLM state offices is March 30, 2012.  Attachment 1 is a detailed description of the BLM’s 2012 award program.  Like the 2012 awards program brochures, the attachment provides information on the nomination and selection processes, including specific criteria for the five categories of awards, as well as information regarding the format for nominations, required number of copies, etc.  Please note that operations eligible for nomination are not limited to public lands administrated by the BLM.  

The awards program is open to all solid mineral (non-coal) industries or operations nationally, without regard to land ownership. To further the BLM/United States Forest Service “Service First” initiative, operators conducting activities on Forest Service lands are encouraged to apply. As stated in the attachment, the deadline for submission of nominations to the BLM state offices is March 30, 2012.  This new deadline replaces the deadline that appeared in brochures previously distributed to the BLM offices.  
State offices are to receive and initially process nominations, including verifying the information that is submitted with a nomination and determining if the nominee is in compliance with all applicable regulations. The compliance verification process for a mining operation should include a site visit by the BLM personnel.  When a nominee is not regulated by the BLM, the state office must obtain written confirmation from the regulator that the nominee is in compliance. After preparing a Statement of Findings for each nomination, state offices are requested to forward all nominations and an accompanying Statement of Findings to the Washington Office, Division of Solid Minerals (WO-320), by April 27, 2012. The documents should be sent by Federal Express to:
U.S. Department of the Interior
Bureau of Land Management (WO-320)
20 M Street, SE
Attention: Mary Linda Ponticelli
Washington, DC 20003
Timeframe: The following is a summary of the deadlines:
 March 30, 2012         Deadline for award nominations to be filed with state offices
 April 27, 2012           Deadline for state offices to send nominations and accompanying
                                    Statement of Findings to WO-320
Budget Impact: The anticipated budget impact of this award program to the field is minimal.
Background: The DOI, through the Office of Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement, has presented reclamation awards to coal operations since 1986. In 2002, the Department requested that the BLM institute its own awards program and that the program be open to solid mineral (non-coal) operations nationally without regard to land ownership. The 2012 awards program will mark the tenth anniversary of the BLM awards program.
Manual/Handbook Sections Affected: No manual or handbook sections are affected. 
Coordination: Coordination activities for this award program are ongoing. The BLM Washington Office is working closely with the National Mining Association to publicize and coordinate the awards program. Organizations with an interest in solid minerals management are invited to submit nominations. 
Contact: If you have any questions please contact Michael D. Nedd, Assistant Director, Minerals and Realty Management at 202-208-4201 or a member from your staff may contact Mary Linda Ponticelli, Division of Solid Minerals, at 202-912-7115 or Mary_Ponticelli@blm.gov or Mitchell Leverette, Chief, Division of Solid Minerals at 202-912-7113.
Signed by:                                                                    Authenticated by:
Michael Nedd                                                                Robert M. Williams
Assistant Director                                                         Division of IRM Governance,WO-560
Minerals and Realty Management
1 Attachment

Last updated: 03-01-2012