New life for Nevada land initiatives in Congress

WASHINGTON — Efforts to clean up an old Henderson mine and boost economic development in Yerington were given new life through bills revived in Congress on Thursday.

Nevada’s senators and Rep. Joe Heck, R-Nev., relaunched a bid to reclaim the abandoned manganese Three Kids Mine off Lake Mead Parkway.

The 1,260-acre site that today is divided into federal and privately held parcels would be acquired by the Henderson Redevelopment Agency and turned over to a development company to be scraped of toxins and turned into neighborhoods and a business district.

“This innovative solution to a long-standing problem in the community is a win-win for Nevadans,” said Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev.

Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., said Henderson “has had to deal with the hazardous effects of Three Kids Mine for far too long.”

Meanwhile, freshman Rep. Steven Horsford, D-Nev., introduced his first bill. It would allow the city of Yerington to buy 12,500 acres of federal land for a business park and other amenities to support Pumpkin Hollow, a mine site being developed by Nevada Copper.

The bill also designates 48,000 acres in Lyon County as the Wovoka Wilderness, named after a Native American spiritual leader born in the area.

Horsford said much of the groundwork is in place for the bill that is modeled after one last year when Rep. Mark Amodei, R-Nev., represented Yerington in Congress.

“This is going to create 2,000 jobs in Lyon County, we have bipartisan agreement ,” Horsford said.

Both the Henderson and Yerington bills passed the House last year but stalled in the Senate and died at the end of the session.

Contact Stephens Washington Bureau Chief Steve Tetreault at stetreault@stephensmedia.com or 202-783-1760. Follow him on Twitter @STetreaultDC.