Surface Mining:

Information on Coal Mining Citations Issued by Kentucky Inspectors

RCED-86-180FS: Published: Jun 30, 1986. Publicly Released: Jul 16, 1986.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO examined all non-compliance notices and cessation orders Kentucky submitted to the Department of Interior's Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement in the past year to determine whether Kentucky mining inspectors have failed to issue such citations.

GAO found that: (1) 175 inspectors issued 3,986 citations from March 1985 through March 1986; (2) 40 of the 175 inspectors issued 5 or fewer citations during that period; (3) 20 of the 40 inspectors were chief inspectors who supervised other inspectors and did not normally issue citations; and (4) 5 of the remaining 20 inspectors issued no citations. GAO determined that these 20 inspectors issued few or no citations because they: (1) inspected large mines that historically experienced few problems; (2) reviewed permits rather than inspected mines; or (3) were recently hired employees.

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