Taseko says New Prosperity panel information requests routine

Taseko Mines Ltd. said information requests from federal review panel are routine and part of any panel process.

Following up on the federal review panel  of New Prosperity’s Information Request to Taseko on Nov. 26, Taseko said information requests are routine and part of any panel process.

“It’s not uncommon for a panel to send a proponent dozens of IRs,” said Brian Battison, Taseko’s vice-president of corporate and community affairs Thursday.

That statement was validated Monday when a new  letter was sent from panel chair Bill Ross to Taseko, listing a total of 50 different IRs.

They range from cumulative effects, to fish habitat and metal leaching. Once the material is submitted, the panel will decide whether to proceed to a 15-day period for public comment or proceed to public hearings, Ross’s letter noted.

Battison said panels often seek additional information from project proponents on an array of matters, and that it is not an uncommon practice.

“It will be Taseko’s responsibility to respond to any IRs issued by the panel and we will do so,” Battison said.

While Taseko prepares its responses the clock which tracks the government time remaining in the 12-month review period is stopped, however, work on the review continues and the clock will be restarted once the panel is satisfied Taseko has provided an adequate response to the IR(s) Battison added.

“It is important to remember the panel is reviewing thousands of pages of scientific evidence which has been presented for the project.”

Taseko is aware of the community interest in the project and will continue to keep people informed as the process moves forward, Battison added.

The link to the panel’s Dec. 10 letter can be found here: http://www.ceaa.gc.ca/050/documents/p63928/83868E.pdf

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