Coal Tattoo

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Massey Energy has been making a lot of noise in its complaints about the way the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration is investigating the Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster. (See previous posts here and here).

But in a ruling quietly issued last week, an administrative law judge with the Federal Mine Safety and Health Administration blasts Massey subsidiary Performance Coal Co.”s handling of the matter. In denying Massey’s request for an expedited hearing on its complaints about MSHA’s investigation procedures, Judge Margaret A. Miller wrote:

I am concerned about the motives of  Performance in this case. Instead of focusing on the issue at hand and submitting legal authorities that entitle it to an expedited hearing, it uses this venue to attack the investigative techniques of MSHA, which are really not at issue here.

Performance’s documents exaggerate and misrepresent the facts, and make little attempt to address the legal issues that are being raised.

Instead, Performance treats this Court as a forum for grandstanding and, in doing so, attempts to interfere with the ongoing investigation.

I’ve posted a copy of Judge Miller’s decision here.