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State Senate approves mining bill 17-16Submitted: 02/27/2013
Story By The Associated Press

MADISON - It took nearly nine hours of debate, but the state Senate has approved a Republican bill that would dramatically overhaul Wisconsin's mining regulations. It passed 17 to 16 around 9:00 p.m. Wednesday.

The measure is designed to make it easier for Gogebic Taconite's plans for an iron mine in the Penokee Hills just south of Lake Superior.

The GOP says the mine would create hundreds of jobs. Minority Democrats counter the bill would relax environmental protections and open the door to pollution.

The state Assembly is expected to take the bill up next week. Republicans control that house as well.

Approval there would send the measure on to Gov. Scott Walker for his signature.

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