A company looking to open a huge iron mine near Mellen wants state officials to renew its two exploratory drilling permits.
The Department of Natural Resources granted Gogebic Taconite two exploratory drilling permits last year. The company has asked the DNR to renew each permit for another year.
Now the company has asked the agency to renew each permit. One permit would authorize drilling six new holes as well as another hole the company had planned to dig over the last year but didn't. The other permit would cover six other holes that have already been dug but remain open for groundwater investigation.
DNR hydro-geologist Larry Lynch says the holes are relatively small at about 2 inches in diameter.
The DNR has until July 15 to respond.