Surface Coal Mining and Reclamation Operations Permit Applications
In an effort to provide the citizens of Illinois a more timely review of applications for coal mining permits the Office of Mines and Minerals has established an initiative to make available new permit and significant revision applications for review on the Land Reclamation web site.

Application Process and Required Hearing
Once an application for a permit or significant revision has been deemed administratively complete, the applicant forwards the required number of copies of the application to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources;  files two copies of the application with county clerk – one for public review and one to be forwarded to the chairman of the county board of supervisors; and publishes a public notice in a local newspaper of general circulation once a week for four consecutive weeks. This marks the official beginning of the application review period as presented on the IDNR’s website.

Copies of the application are forwarded to the Illinois EPA and Department of Agriculture. These agencies have 45 days to review the application and submit comments to the Department. The application is also forwarded to the NRCS and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

  • Written comments from the public may be forwarded to Department for up to 30 days after the last publication of the newspaper notice
  • Any person whose interests may be affected adversely by the issuance of the permit has until 30 days after the last newspaper notice to request that Department hold an informal conference
  • Any interested party has until 80 days after the first newspaper notice to request a public hearing.

The Department considers all comments received, along with information gathered at the informal conference and/or public hearing, if held, and the results of its own review. Based on this information, the decision is made as to whether to issue, deny, or require modifications to the application. The decision to issue, deny, or require modifications of the application shall be issued within 120 days of the filing of the application with the county or within 60 days of the close of an informal conference or public hearing comment period

Visit the Illinois Department of Natural Resources’ website for a description of the state’s permitting process and read Standing Laws and Regulations for more information and detail.

Other Useful Resources
The resources that follow have been prepared by Prairie Rivers Network and the Illinois Chapter of the Sierra Club to help you navigate the permitting process. Click each link to read or save to your computer.



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