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old gold miner

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In studying the issues with SB 670,

I noticed CA DFG & the CA Water Quality Control Board receive massive amounts of FEDERAL FUNDING for various in-state projects annually.

Then, in reviewing a few of those grants, one thing became apparent.

CA state agencies that accept FEDERAL FUNDING must operate in compliance with FEDERAL LAW.

What does that mean, with regards to SB 670 suction dredge prohibitions.

The General Mining Law is a FEDERAL LAW.

The vast majority of suction dredge gold mining takes place on FEDERAL PUBLIC DOMAIN LAND.

On unpatented placer mining claims, are initiated & held under FEDERAL LAW.

The federal government itself cannot unlawfully abridge a mining claim owners vested right to mine there.

If CA DFG and/or the Water Quality Resource Board prohibits what federal law allows on federal lands.

Both agencies are acting in contravention of FEDERAL LAW, by prohibiting suction dredging.

As such, they are not in compliance with federal law, and should forfeit federal funding.

I would think, letters to the federal agencies that provide those funds to CA, would get that ball rolling.

I would assume, losing hundreds of millions of dollars in annual federal funding, because of SB 670.

Would get the state legislatures ATTENTION.

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I hope the attorneys who represent small scale prospecting interests are aware of the numerous insights, such as this one, that you have posted. Batting such ideas around is to legal advocacy as pitching warm-ups are to baseball. Keep these ideas coming!

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LOL, one could also file a complaint against DFG here.


The California Whistleblower Protection Act authorizes the California State Auditor to receive complaints from state employees and members of the public who wish to report an improper governmental activity. An "improper governmental activity" is defined as any action that violates the law, is economically wasteful, or involves gross misconduct, incompetency, or inefficiency. The complaints received by the State Auditor shall remain confidential, and the identity of the complainant may not be revealed without the permission of the complainant, except to an appropriate law enforcement agency conducting a criminal investigation.

Upon receiving a complaint, the State Auditor may conduct an investigation into the facts alleged in the complaint to determine whether an improper governmental activity has occurred. Before launching an investigation, the State Auditor's staff will conduct a careful evaluation of the complaint to determine whether it has enough potential merit to warrant the expenditure of state resources to conduct an investigation. We therefore ask that you keep the following points in mind when filing a complaint:

We need a clear and concise statement of what you are alleging is an improper act, why you believe it is improper, and what evidence there is to confirm that what you are saying is true.

If you do not provide a name or other information that clearly identifies the person you are alleging has acted improperly, and the department where that person works, we may not know whom to investigate.

If you do not identify witnesses or documents that will support what you are saying, we may not be able to verify that what you are saying is true.

While you may submit a complaint anonymously, we may not be able to determine whether your complaint has merit if we are not able to interview you.

Submitting copies of any documents that will support your complaint is extremely helpful to our evaluation process. However, please submit copies of the documents, rather than the original documents, as they cannot be returned. If we need the original documents, we will ask you for them later.

California State Auditor, Bureau of State Audits

555 Capitol Mall, Suite 300, Sacramento, CA 95814

(916) 445-0255

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