Stonegate Agricom Ltd. announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Paris Hills Agricom Inc., has obtained phosphate mineral leases from the State of Idaho allowing it the legal right to mine phosphate in areas for which it previously had state-issued exploration permits.
"The conversion of exploration permits to mineral leases for areas on which the state holds the mineral rights at Paris Hills is the first in a series of state permitting approvals required before we begin underground phosphate mining at the property," said Mark Ashcroft, president and chief executive officer.
"The permitting process, which began last fall, is proceeding as planned. We have finished the drilling of wells related to the collection of baseline water information and we will be submitting formal applications to the appropriate Idaho departments concerning water use and other permitting matters in the months ahead. We expect to complete the permitting process and commence construction and production by the fourth quarter of 2014."
The mineral leases were issued by the Idaho Department of Lands and grant Paris Hills the right to mine phosphate where the state owns the surface and mineral rights. Earnings from the leases will go to state endowment funds that benefit Idaho's public schools and universities. The company already had the right to mine in mineral lease areas owned by individuals, which include most of the remainder of the property.
Details of a mine plan and planned permitting activities at Paris Hills are available in a summary of the recently completed Feasibility Study published in a report entitled NI43-101 Technical Report Paris Hills Phosphate Project Bloomington, Idaho, dated Jan. 18, 2013, and available on Sedar at http://www.sedar.com/ and on the Company's website at http://www.stonegateagricom.com/.