Obama Administration's War on Coal Claims Another Victim

August 1, 2012

OhioAmerican Energy, Inc., announced yesterday it would close its coal mining operations in Brilliant, Ohio. The company’s press release cites “regulatory actions by President Barack Obama and his appointees” as the “entire reason” for the mine’s closure. Ryan Murray, the company’s Vice President of Operations, blamed the jobs lost at OhioAmerican solely on president Obama’s regulatory agenda and warned of more layoffs to come, stating, "There will be additional layoffs, not only at Murray Energy, but also throughout the United States coal industry due to Mr. Obama's 'War on Coal' and the destruction that it has caused to so many jobs and families in the Ohio Valley area and elsewhere."

Workers across the country are sadly suffering the brunt of the Obama EPA’s aggressive regulatory agenda. Members of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power recently traveled to Abingdon, Virginia, the heart of coal country for a field hearing to hear directly from coal miners and plant operators. Witnesses testified that they fear a similar fate as the employees of OhioAmerican. Despite 41 consecutive months of higher than 8 percent national unemployment, the EPA’s regulations have the potential to put countless more Americans out of work.

Human Events        
August 1, 2012

The OhioAmerican Energy company announced it would close its coal mine near Brilliant, Ohio on Tuesday.  There is no question whatsoever about the reason for the shutdown, because the company made it abundantly clear in their press release, which I am reproducing in full below. President Obama will be campaigning in Ohio on Wednesday; perhaps someone will present him with a copy of this letter and ask for his thoughts.

OhioAmerican Energy, Inc. (“OhioAmerican”), a Subsidiary of Murray Energy Corporation (“Murray Energy”), today announced the closure of its coal mining operations near Brilliant, Jefferson County, Ohio.

Regulatory actions by President Barack Obama and his appointees and followers were cited as the entire reason.  “Mr. Obama has already destroyed 83,000 megawatts of coal-fired electricity generation in America,” said Mr. Michael T. W. Carey, Vice President of Government Affairs for Murray Energy.  “Electric prices in the recent PJM Interconnection monthly auction were bid up 800 percent (8 times) for 2015-2016 because of this,” he added.

“At its peak, OhioAmerican employed 239 local people in high-paying, well-benefited jobs,” said Mr. Stanley T. Piasecki, General Manager and Superintendent.  “University studies show that our Mines can create up to eleven (11) secondary jobs in our communities, for store clerks, teachers, etc., to serve our direct employees.  Thus, if one uses the eleven (11) to one (1) multiplier, the Obama Administration has destroyed  2,868 jobs in eastern Ohio with this forced Mine closure,” stated Mr. Piasecki. …

Read the article online here.

Mine lays off Ohio workers
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
August 1, 2012

Murray Energy Corp. of Pepper Pike, Ohio, announced the closure of a subsidiary mining operation in eastern Ohio on Tuesday.

The OhioAmerican Energy Inc. will close operations based in Jefferson County, Ohio, and is the second Murray Energy subsidiary this month to announce a downsizing. The mine employed nearly 240 workers, 32 of whom will be relocated to another Murray operation.

OhioAmerican was founded in 2007 by Robert E. Murray, and operations were intended to last for at least 10 years, the company said. Murray Energy announced layoffs at a different Ohio mining operation earlier this month.

As with the first announcement, this latest one also blames changes on regulations enforced by the Obama administration. "There will be additional layoffs, not only at Murray Energy, but also throughout the United States coal industry due to Mr. Obama's 'War on Coal' and the destruction that it has caused to so many jobs and families in the Ohio Valley area and elsewhere," said Mr. Murray.

Read the article online here.

Coal Company Announces Layoffs In Jefferson Co.
July 31, 2012

The closure of a Jefferson County coal mining operation means at least 24 people are out of work.

OhioAmerican Energy says an additional 32 employees will be laid off in late September or early October, but all are expected to be re-hired at another mining operation.

The company cites the Obama administration's energy policies as the reason for the layoffs.

At its peak, OhioAmerican Energy employed 239 people, and parent company Murray Energy says more layoffs are coming at its mines and others across the country.

Read the article online here