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Oral Arguments in Menominee Tribe Lawsuit

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The judge in the US Eastern District Court in Green Bay heard oral arguments Wednesday regarding a lawsuit filed by the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin against the Environmental Protection Agency and the US Army Corps of Engineers. The suit alleges the federal agencies have failed to exercise jurisdiction over wetland permits for Aquila Resources’ Back Forty Mine as required by the Clean Water Act. The Menominee Tribe says the permitting process should have been handled at the federal level, rather than allowing the Michigan DEQ to issue the project’s permits. In June, Aquila was granted a conditional wetlands permit from the DEQ, the final of the four permits necessary to begin pre-construction work on the Back Forty Mine to be located in Menominee County’s Stephenson Township.

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