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BLM fees as of July 2019

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The BLM doesn’t have anything special for clubs. The club name must be a legal name. If you keep the number of claims below 10 the club can qualify as a small miner and wave the $165 annual fee for each claim. A form 3830-2 form must be filled out each year for each claim stating that at least $100 of work was performed. Example; ten hours of road improvement at $10 per hour.

I found this information at; 


Maintenance Fee Payment Waiver Certification (Small Miner’s Waiver)
If a claimant owns 10 or fewer active claims/sites on Federal land nationwide, the claimant may qualify for a maintenance fee payment waiver also known as the small miner’s waiver.  Form 3830-2 must be used when filing a small miner’s waiver request and must be filed or postmarked (if mailed) on or before September 1 every year. There is no processing fee to file a waiver.  By filing a waiver, claimants are certifying that they and all related parties own 10 or fewer claims and sites nationwide and that assessment work (see requirements below) has been or will be performed, and that the proper affidavits of assessment or annual labor will be timely filed.

The maintenance fee and small miner’s waiver must be paid or filed in the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) state office (in Alaska, the Fairbanks District Office also accepts fee payment) of the state where the claim or site is located.  If a claimant owns claims or sites in multiple states, a fee or waiver must be paid or filed in each state where each claim or site is located.  Failure to timely pay the fee or file the waiver in the proper BLM office will subject your claims or sites to forfeiture by operation of law.

Annual Assessment Work
Claimants requesting a small miner’s waiver from paying the annual maintenance fee, must perform assessment work and spend a minimum of $100 in labor or improvements on each claim, and record evidence of such with the BLM on or before December 30 of the calendar year in which the assessment year ended.  The same document that the claimant records with the county must be filed with the BLM.  The BLM processing fee is $15 per claim for recording an affidavit of annual assessment. The assessment work must be performed within the period defined as the assessment year.  Assessment work includes, but is not limited to, drilling, excavations, driving shafts and tunnels, sampling (geochemical or bulk), road construction on or for the benefit of the mining claim; and geological, geochemical, and geophysical surveys. Optional Form 3830-4 may be used for affidavits of assessment filed with the BLM.

Have a good day,

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According to the blm. There is no such thing as recreational mining. Never has been.   

 Road repair  does not work on the small miners exemption any more either. 


      Rusty Palmer  


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Every spring on our first visit to our claims up in the Tahoe National Forest in Sierra County we have to take a saw with us to cut our way along a narrow trail for 2 miles and many elevation changes through fallen timber after the winter snowstorms and encroaching side brush impede access to the claims.  We've always included trail cutting work in our proofs of labor and they've never been rejected.  The FS approves of this, I suppose, because otherwise they would have to do it (which they do in the case of massive trees too large for us to handle).  But, additionally, we also report other work performed to improve the claim ranging from replacement windows for the cabin (which serves to store our mining equipment) after bears break in to the number of cubic feet of gravels we process.  The key criterion is whether the work improves the claim in the sense of improving one's ability to recover gold.  Thus, what doesn't work is picking up litter or packing out garbage.  Those types of labor may "improve" sightliness, but contribute nothing toward gold extraction.

"Recreational" mining (a phrase that has as many interpretations as there are interpretors) is not covered by the Mining Law of 1872.  The ML of 1872, enacted during America's westward expansion (along with homestead laws), envisions the types of work that ultimately can result in patenting land.

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