Complaint Filed Against GTAC Bill Williams

GTac President Bill Williams after Ashland County passed their metallic mining zoning ordinance

GTac President Bill Williams after Ashland County passed their metallic mining zoning ordinance

Earlier today, after the Ashland County Board passed a metallic mining zoning ordinance 18 to 1, GTac President Bill Williams allegedly ripped a citizen’s cell phone from his hands as he was recording.

According to David Joe Bates, he was listening and recording a discussion with Ashland County Administrator Jeff Beril on some issues about the ordinance when Williams ripped his phone out of his hand.

“I filed a complaint with the Ashland City police. We’ll see what happens next,” said Bates. “I took it right back and told you better not ever touch me again!”

GTac filed their preapplication notification on Monday before the Iron County Zoning Committee met to discuss their new metallic mining ordinance. Apparently, the mining company rushed to file in an attempt to circumvent the new zoning ordinances both counties are putting into place.

Last Tuesday, when someone snatched a phone from a drilling site observer, Gtac referred to them as “Al Queda” and “eco-terrorists.”

Below is a video of Bill Williams, speaking at an event in Ashland in early 2011, assuring the audience that they will not be changing any of the then-current mining laws of the state. As it turned out, he and GTAC were in the process of writing the new mining bill even as he spoke.

UDW believes that the real eco-terrorists are GTac, who have lied to the people of northern Wisconsin throughout the entire process, and who will destroy not only the Bad River Watershed with their proposed 22-mile open pit mountaintop removal iron ore mine in the Penokee Hills, but perpetrate the genocide of the Bad River Tribe of Lake Superior Chippewa, whose reservation is only six miles from the proposed mine site.

80 Hikers Visit Mine Drill Site Guarded by Local Police

Yesterday, approximately 80 hikers made the trek from LCO Harvest Camp up to the site of exploratory drilling taking place in the Penokee Hills. It was a peaceful event and hikers got to meet about 14 police officers from five different jurisdictions who were guarding GTAC, the mining corporation’s interests. There were no incidents, and hikers returned to Harvest Camp for some food and conversation. Photos: Ros Nelson

Robert Kennedy Jr.: Lake Superior Needs Your Help #RFKvisitPenokeeHills


Read the letter to Robert Kennedy Jr.
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button proof2May 5, 2013

Robert Kennedy Jr.

Dear Mr. Kennedy:

We are writing to you today with the utmost urgency. Northern Wisconsin is being threatened with the installation of a 22-mile open pit mountaintop removal iron ore mine in the heart of the Bad River watershed. Despite overwhelming public outcry, the Tea Party Republican legislators in this state have sold Wisconsin out. The new mining law “legally” allows the mining companies to pollute the waters.

Evidence of the enormous potential for environmental and economic damages are plenty; but perhaps most disturbing of all is the hostile takeover of our state government by legislators who have abandon their oath to serve and protect the people and resources of this state. Despite overwhelming opposition to the new law and an iron mine in this area, legislators who are aligned the ALEC, Cline Mines and Koch Brothers have left us unprotected and vulnerable to a multinational corporation coming into our area, removing local controls and doing whatever they wish with our precious resources.

United in Defense of the Water was formed when elected officials from all levels of government from the Lake Superior basin traveled to Madison to give a press conference at the Capitol. They explained clearly why this mine would bring ruin to the land, water, environment and economy. They countered the propaganda being put out by Extreme Mining Advocates by explaining clearly why the mine will hurt us. All of this has been ignored.

waterislife has all the documentation needed to understand the multi-level crisis we are engaged in right now in Wisconsin. Here you can see videos of the press conference, and many other links to proof that this mine will hurt us beyond recovery.

Your uncle President John Kennedy spoke at the Ashland Airport on September 24, 1963. On a tour to defend the natural resources of the country, he implored us to protect our natural resources:

The entire northern Great Lakes area, with its vast inland sea, its 27,000 lakes, and its thousands of streams is a central and significant part of the fresh water assets of this nation. We must act to preserve these assets. If we fail to act, then the pressures of a growing population and expanding economy may destroy our natural assets before our heirs can enjoy them.

Please come to northern Wisconsin, Mr. Kennedy. We need the Kennedy bump.

Citizens United in Defense of the Water
P.O. Box 153
La Pointe, WI 54850

Bulletproof Security guarding GTAC's test drill sites. Photo: Rob Ganson

Bulletproof Security guarding GTAC’s test drill sites. Photo: Rob Ganson

UPDATE: In the past few days, it has come to light that GTAC, the mining company, has hired a security firm known as BulletProof Security to patrol the site of the core sample drilling in the Penokee Hills. These camouflaged guards are carrying what appear to be semi-automatic machine guns. The entire community is shocked and afraid of this action on the part of the mining company.

Please Mr. Kennedy, we need help here!

GTAC Being Made to Face Joint Mining Impact Committees May 8

GTac engineer Tim Myers, lobbyist Bob Seitz and CEO Bill Williams in front of the Iron County Board. Photo: Rebecca Kemble

GTac engineer Tim Myers, lobbyist Bob Seitz and CEO Bill Williams in front of the Iron County Board. Photo: Rebecca Kemble

On Wednesday, May 8, 2013, the Town of Morse will host a question and answer session with officials from Gogebic Taconite (GTac) concerning the four-phase, 22-mile open pit taconite mine they plan to develop in Iron and Ashland Counties.

Wedsneday May 8, 2013
6 PM
Town of Morse Town Hall
Mellon, WI

According to an email from Save The Water’s Edge, an associate contacted the organization to inform them of the meeting taking place and that, “They are not planning to notify the public because ‘they do not want a lot of dumb questions.’”

As of Friday at 3 PM, Save The Water’s Edge reported that the Iron County Clerk’s office could not find a public posting for this meeting.

GTac was part of a similar public meeting in Hurley on Tuesday, April 23, when the Iron County Board held a tightly-controlled question and answer session with GTac.  Watch the entire meeting here.