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Greg Walden is taking a closer look at federal fines at rock quarries and mines in the State. That's because the Oregon Concrete and Aggregate and Producers Association or OCAPA says there's been an unfair surge in citations from the federal mine regulators. "From what I've heard if they have a cracked window or have a rock chip. like what we get around here all winter, they get fined a couple hundred bucks and apparently very uneven enforcement. Things they are told are fine one week and then someone else comes in the next week and they whacked the next week; it’s that unpredictable government enforcement with a heavy hand and fine that causes small businesses to get very frustrated and not want to grow.” Walden adds he has no intention of downplaying the need for safety regulations in mining. But some rock quarry owners say the regulations often have nothing to do with safety. Some were fined for having cardboard boxes in the wrong place in the office, even though the boxes were being delivered during the inspection and they weren't given time to put them away. Besides being in Bend today, Walden is also talking with restaurant owners in Madras at Great Earth Natural Foods at 2 p.m.

 

 

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