SODA SPRINGS, Idaho -

The Bureau of Land Management wants public comment on a proposal that would turn a thousand acres in southeast Idaho... into an open pit mine.

The proposed Husky North Dry Ridge Mine would be in a rural canyon about 19 miles northeast of Soda Springs.

For the next month the BLM is asking for local input and any concerns people might have with the start of the new mine before work starts on the Environmental Impact Statement.

"We want to know what the public's issues are so we can make sure that they're captured in the EIS and it helps direct our analysis so we know what's important,” BLM geologist Bill Stout said.

The proposal would allow Agrium to mine phosphate in the dry valley area.

For many of the people living nearby in Soda Springs, the announcement of a new mine doesn't really raise any red flags.

"No it doesn't, and let me tell you why. They do such a good job in their reclamation projects. They take the ore from the earth and then they replenish the earth back,” Soda Springs resident Bob Reese said.

The BLM will hold public meetings on the proposed mine in September.

·       Bureau of Land Management - 4350 Cliffs Drive, Pocatello, Idaho – September 5, 2012 7-9 PM.
·       Soda Springs City Hall - 9 West 2nd South, Soda Springs, Idaho  83276
September 6, 2012 from 7-9 PM.
·       Shoshone-Bannock Hotel Event Center, Fort Hall, Idaho – September 7, 2012 from 4-6 PM.