A compromise plan to give final approval for a 13-mile power line for the Rosemont Mine unanimously passed the Arizona Corporation Commission late this afternoon.
The 5-0 commission vote followed hours of closed-door negotiations among the various interest groups and an executive session by the commission.
It gives Rosemont Copper something it wanted — an end to the protracted debate over this power line that had lasted six months.
It gives opponents something they wanted — a requirement that the mine obtain four other permits and other government approvals before construction could start on the power line. The mining company would also have to acquire right of way for the power line across the Santa Rita Experimental Range from the State Land Department, which owns the historic range.
In December, the Arizona Power Plant and Line Siting Committee had approved, also unanimously, a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility for the power line that required only one additional permit — final Forest Service OK of the mine itself — before construction could start on the power line.
Read more of this story Thursday in the Arizona Daily Star and on StarNet.