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Governor Walker Attends Groundbreaking of Fort Knox Mine Expansion



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Office of Governor Bill Walker

 

FAIRBANKS, AK—Governor Bill Walker gave remarks at a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday at Fort Knox Mine for a significant expansion of the mine that is happening because of teamwork between local, state, and federal agencies.

“Plain and simple, this is a great day for Fairbanks,” Governor Bill Walker said. “Because of this new investment by Kinross Gold, Interior Alaska will enjoy another decade of high-paying jobs at the mine and an influx of revenue that support schools, roads, and public safety.”

Office of Governor Bill Walker

Left to right: Fort Knox Mine Vice President Eric Hill, Assistant Secretary of Mine Safety David Zatezalo, Governor Bill Walker, Assistant Interior Secretary Joe Balash, and Alaska Division of Mining Director Brent Goodrum.

The expansion extends the life of the mine to at least 2030, circulating hundreds of millions of dollars in Alaska’s economy in terms of payroll, payment of royalties, rent, and property tax, and corporate investment. Fort Knox employs about 630 people and is the largest property taxpayer in Fairbanks.

The Alaska Mental Health Trust will receive additional revenue because of the expansion, and already has received more than $24 million from Fort Knox, helping improve the lives of Alaskans with mental illness, addiction, Alzheimer’s and dementia, developmental disabilities, and traumatic brain injuries.

The mine expansion required transferring the 709-acre Gilmore parcel, adjacent to the existing mine, from the federal government to State of Alaska ownership. This land transfer required years of effort and cooperation by Kinross Gold, the Alaska Department of Natural Resources, NOAA, BLM, the Congressional delegation, and many individuals.

 

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