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Virginia tells Supreme Court uranium mining ban should stand

FILE – In this Sept. 14, 2004, file photo, Smith Ranch-Highland employee, April Frausto, samples water for contamination, at a monitoring well on the perimeter of the uranium mining zone 30 miles north of Douglas, Wyo. (AP Photo/Robert Black, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Attorneys for Virginia say there is no need for the U.S. Supreme Court to take up a lawsuit over the state’s ban on uranium mining.

Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring’s office filed a brief earlier this week in response to one filed by the federal government. The Trump administration is supporting a Virginia company’s bid to have its challenge heard.

Pittsylvania County-based Virginia Uranium Inc. wants to mine a huge deposit of the radioactive ore. It argues a federal law should pre-empt state regulations prohibiting the mining.

The state disagrees in its filing. It also argues that the federal government has not identified any pressing need for the high court to intervene.

Virginia’s ban has been in place since the 1980s. Legislative attempts to overturn it have failed.

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