Coal Billionaire Owes Millions In Safety Fines

Jul 31, 2014

A West Virginia coal billionaire has more than 250 pending violations at mining operations in Kentucky and four other states.

West Virginia Coal Billionaire Jim Justice
West Virginia Coal Billionaire Jim Justice
Credit wmmt radio

The Courier-Journal cited data from the federal Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement in reporting that almost half of the citations against mines owned by Jim Justice are located in Kentucky, where enforcement officials have set an Aug. 11 deadline to take corrective action. Other violations are pending at operations in West Virginia, Tennessee, Virginia and Alabama.

Kentucky regulators threatened to suspend mining permits for Justice companies in June due to frustration over a slow response, but set the later date after the companies responded with a plan to take "serious actions."

Justice acknowledged the violations are significant, but he said all the issues will be corrected.