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Sylvester, WV

A Letter from the Elk Run Coal Company, Inc.

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

The following letter is from the Elk Run permit manager to Haskel Boytek, a permit supervisor.

January 9, 2006

Re: Permit U-5003-05
Roundbottom Powellton

Dear Mr. Boytek:

Elk Run Coal Company has prepared this response based on the review of the public comments recieved for the above referenced permit during our meeting held January 9, 2006. Those in attendence at that meeting were Paul McCombs, Wayne Persinger representing Elk Run Coal Company and Kenneth Maxwell, Greg Ball, Tracie Kitchen, Haskel Boytek, Tom Satterfield, Dallas Runyon, and Terry Ramey representing the DEP.

Typical mining explosion, courtesy of Kilowatt OursBlasting: Blasting concerns as it relates to damage to their homes will be handled according to current blasting regulations. Pre blasting surveys will be conducted on residences within one half mile of the permit area. Any damage to residents’ homes will be based on this survey.

Coal Haulage: No coal haulage will occur after 11 pm. All loaded coal trucks will be covered and will maintain a 30-mile per hour speed limit within the Sylvester City limits. The road to the mine site will be paved to minimize tracking of mud onto Route 3. Route 3 will be cleaned, as it currently is, weekly unless it requires additional attention while coal is hauled. Flashing warning lights and signs will be installed at the intersection of Route 3 and the mine access road. Upon completion of hauling coal through Sylvester, Route 3 will be evaluated by Elk Run Coal Company and the Department of Highways to determine if any damage in excess of the normal wear and tear has occured. If a determination has been made as to damage a cost will be agreed upon by both parties at that time.

Dust: The entire beltline will be enclosed from mountain to mountain. The permit has typical details that show how that will be accomplished. The beltline will have a dust suppressant system on it to further minimize dust at the transfer points. Note that these transfer points will be totally enclosed as well. The cleaning of the road will also help with the dust concerns.

Cemetery: A cemetery was located that was in the path of the proposed overland beltline. This belt line has been relocated to avoid this cemetery. The cemetery has been located and a chain link fence has been constructed around the perimeter of the cemetery. In addition repairs have been made to some graves where they have settled.

New Road Construction: Concerns were raised about the construction of the access road above Route 3. During the construction of this road fencing material will be maintained ahead of the construction to keep material from rolling over the hill and onto the highway or into residents’ homes. In addition the contractor will station a spotter on Route 3 with radio communication with the equipment operators to watch for falling debris, which could pose a hazard to the citizens.

300-foot Waiver: Residents that live within a 300-foot radius of where the mine site access road intersects with Route 3 are being asked to sign a waiver to allow the permit limits within 300 feet of their residences. This waiver is required so that the mine access road can be widened to all for easier access from Route 3. This is necessary so that the coal trucks can have easier and safer access to Route 3.

Impoundment: The impoundment issue does not have anything to do with this permit. However, all impoundments must have an emergency warning plan approved annually by the DEP.

Sludge dam above Sylvester, WV as shown in Google EarthSewage System: Elk Run Coal Company will be connecting to the local PSD for its water and sewage for its mine bath house use.

Meetings: Elk Run Coal Company and DEP discussed that any future public hearings should be held at the Sylvester Community Building. This community building has ample space and is more convenient to the residents of Sylvester. In addition it was discussed that Elk Run Coal Company representatives meet periodically with the Sylvester town council to discuss various issues.

If you should have any questions or comments, please contact me at 854-3505.

Sincerely,

Paul McCombs
Permit Manager

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