October 22, 2014
CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) - A bill that would strip the mining companies - and Nevada's long defunct sugar beet industry – of eminent domain powers is championed by supporters as antiquated but opposed by the mining representatives who say it could thwart creation of high-paying jobs.
SB86 is sponsored by Democratic Sen. Sheila Leslie of Reno. Though sugar beets haven't been grown in Nevada for decades, a state law that dates to 1875 gives mining companies the same authority as local governments to take private property.
It became an issue last summer when a Canadian-based mining concern settled with an Elko County rancher after the mining company cited the law in seeking access to mineral rights on ranch land.
An out-of-court settlement was reached.
The bill was heard Monday in the Senate Judiciary Committee.