Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 45.2. Mines, Minerals, and Energy
Chapter 12. Permits for Certain Mining Operations; Reclamation of Land
5/21/2022

Article 4. Minerals Reclamation Fund.

§ 45.2-1233. (Effective October 1, 2021) Definition.

For purposes of this article, "Fund" means the Minerals Reclamation Fund created pursuant to § 45.2-1234.

2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1234. (Effective October 1, 2021) Minerals Reclamation Fund.

There is hereby created in the state treasury a special nonreverting fund to be known as the Minerals Reclamation Fund. The Fund shall be established on the books of the Comptroller. All payments made by operators in accordance with the provisions of this article shall be paid into the state treasury and credited to the Fund. Any moneys remaining in the Fund, including interest thereon, at the end of each fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund but shall remain in the Fund. Moneys in the Fund shall be used solely for the reclamation of mining operations pursuant to § 45.2-1238. Expenditures and disbursements from the Fund shall be made by the State Treasurer on warrants issued by the Comptroller upon written request signed by the Director.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.8; 2017, c. 4; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1235. (Effective October 1, 2021) Membership in Fund; payments required.

Each operator who has had five years of satisfactory operation in the Commonwealth under Chapter 12 (§ 45.2-1200 et seq.) shall become a member of the Fund by making an initial payment to the Fund of $50 for each acre estimated to be affected by mining operations during the next year. Thereafter, the member shall, within 10 days following the anniversary date of each permit issued to the member, make a payment to the Fund of $12.50 for each acre estimated to be affected by mining operations during the next year. Such payments shall continue to be made until the member has paid into the Fund a total of $500 for each acre estimated to be affected under the permits issued to the member.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.9; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1236. (Effective October 1, 2021) Release of bonds and other securities.

All bonds and other securities issued by an operator pursuant to § 45.2-1208 or 45.2-1212 shall be released upon the acceptance into the Fund of such bonds or securities and the payment of required fees.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.10; 2017, c. 4; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1237. (Effective October 1, 2021) Return of member payments.

Subject to the provisions of § 45.2-1240, the Director shall return from the Fund to the member any payment that the member has previously paid to the Fund once the Director determines that the member has completed satisfactory reclamation in accordance with § 45.2-1212. The payments returned shall be only those payments that the member made for the acres that have been satisfactorily reclaimed. In lieu of such return, the member may request that the Director retain the payments in the Fund as payments for additional acres to be disturbed by the member's operations.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.11; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1238. (Effective October 1, 2021) Revocation of permits; reclamation work.

If a permit issued to a member is revoked pursuant to § 45.2-1213, then the payments that the member has made to the Fund in connection with such permit shall be forfeited to the Fund. The Director shall use such forfeited payments, or as much of such payments as necessary, for the reclamation of the mining operation to which the permit applied. If the cost of reclamation exceeds the amount of the forfeited payments, the Director shall also use the proceeds from the member's bond or other security also forfeited in conjunction with the revocation of the permit in accordance with § 45.2-1213, except that if all of the member's bonds and other securities have been released pursuant to § 45.2-1236, then the Director shall draw upon the Fund for the entire cost of reclamation.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.12; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1239. (Effective October 1, 2021) Collection of debt where cost of reclamation exceeds member's forfeited payments, etc.

The amount by which the cost of reclamation exceeds the amount of a member's forfeited payments and the member's forfeited bond or other security, if any, shall constitute a debt of the member to the Commonwealth. The Director is authorized to collect such debts together with the cost of collection through appropriate legal action or by declaring the forfeiture of other payments made by the member to the Fund. Moneys collected through legal action, less the costs of collection, shall be deposited in the Fund.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.13; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1240. (Effective October 1, 2021) Decreases in size of Fund.

Whenever the size of the Fund decreases to less than $2 million, the Director shall suspend the return of payments pursuant to § 45.2-1237 and shall assess all members an equal amount for each affected acre, for a total amount sufficient to raise the Fund to $2 million. In lieu of such assessment, all members shall at the request of the Director post bonds or other securities within six months after the Director so notifies the members. Failure of a member to post bond or other surety or to pay the required assessment shall result in the revocation of the permit of the member and the forfeiture of the member's payments in accordance with § 45.2-1238.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.14; 2017, c. 4; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1241. (Effective October 1, 2021) Order of return of payments.

The return of payments to members shall be made in the order in which the Director approves the completion of reclamation pursuant to § 45.2-1212.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.15; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1242. (Effective October 1, 2021) Discontinuance of Fund.

If the Fund is discontinued, any amounts remaining in the Fund shall be returned to the members in proportion to the amount that each member has paid.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.16; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.

§ 45.2-1243. (Effective October 1, 2021) Construction of article; Fund used solely for reclamation.

Nothing in this article shall be construed as vesting in any member any right, title, or interest in the Fund or the disposition of the Fund. The Fund shall be used solely for reclamation of land pursuant to this chapter.

1978, c. 634, § 45.1-197.17; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 387.