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BRUSH WELLMAN SUPPORTS REFORM

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With respect to the Deseret News' article titled "Treasure-trove buried beneath Utah Sagebrush" (June 5), I'd like to tell the rest of the story. Brush Wellman has, along with our colleagues in the mining industry, long supported responsible reform of the Mining Law.

As noted in the article, there are two versions of the reform legislation - a Senate bill favored by the industry and a House bill favored by the environmental community and those who would stop mining on public lands altogether. It now appears that there will be a conference between those two bodies in the near future.The issues facing the congressional conferees are many and complicated. We feel that these issues should be resolved by modifying existing legislation rather than destroying the extensive body of law that currently exists.

Brush Wellman is not a mining company, nor do we sell commodities. We are a manufacturer of highly engineered materials. The vast majority of the value of our products is added after the ore is recovered.

The article erroneously stated that Brush had spent $1 million in legal fees to process our patent applications. While mineral patents require extensive skilled legal counsel, over 80 percent of the cost to date has been in support of Bureau of Land Management appointed surveyors and ELM personnel who adjudicate the applications.

In the article, Mr. Epstein and Ms. Marchak erroneously stated that Reps. Gillmore (Ohio) and Hansen (Utah) sponsored an amendment that would have exempted Brush Wellman from revisions to the Mining Law. While it is true that both members of Congress used Brush as an example, the purpose of the legislation was to allow the Secretary of Defense, in the case of a national emergency, to request that the Secretary of Interior exempt certain strategic and critical materials from provisions of the Revised Mining Law that might prohibit timely production.

It is true that Brush sponsors a political action committee. The limited funds solicited from the executives and salaried staff are administered by a committee representing our major domestic facilities, not the company. We focus these funds on candidates that represent our employees, and support the free enterprise system, a strong defense of our country and a reasoned approach to environmental issues. To imply that our PAC contributions buy the votes of members of Congress with the integrity of Paul Gillmor or Jim Hansen is ludicrous.

Hugh D. Hanes

Vice president

Environmental and Government Affairs

Brush Wellman

Elmore, Ohio