THE BLOG

Debate Rages on in Nevada Over "Groom Mine" Beside Area 51

07/09/2015 10:10 BST | Updated 03/09/2016 10:59 BST

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35,000 Britons are employed in mining. An industry with a strong industrial past that still remains a major contributor to the British economy estimated at just over 30 billion pounds.

Across the pond mining is on the verge of extinction in the U.S One family are doing all they can to keep their mine alive despite pressure from the U.S government to sell up and move on. Even with an offer of 5.2 million dollars the Sheahan family are not budging from their gold, silver and lead mine located just beside Area 51.

We speak exclusively with family member Rachel Gregory whose ancestors have been involved with Groom Mine in rural Nevada for more than a century.

Q1.Why is your mine threatened?

The owners of Groom Mine were recently given an ultimatum from the U.S. Government: Accept their offer to purchase our property, for a fraction of its worth, or they will condemn the land and take it through eminent domain. They have released a statement, which states that their reasoning behind this is one of national security. We, the owners of Groom Mine, understand their mission and want our government to succeed. We also believe the government has an obligation to protect our Constitutional rights, meaning they should either A) let us keep our property or B) purchase it for JUST compensation, as it states in the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. We have been along side them for more than 70 years and in this time we have never reached out to media about the injustices they have committed against us, but they have left us with no options. On September 10th at the close of business they plan to start the proceedings to condemn our land, how fitting that the next day of all days is September 11th.

Q2. What is happening right now?

We are currently trying to make our story known. We are reaching out to the media and public and also to our political representatives. As of right now we have not heard back from our reps, but are confident that they are working on this and will contact us soon. We have never wanted to sell our property and we certainly do not want to be forced into doing so by our own government. We plan to fight this with every legal means necessary in the hopes that we may can keep and maintain the land our family has held for nearly 130 years.

Q3.What kind of reaction have you got?

Right now we received many positive reactions and feedback from the public and are beyond grateful for that support. We feel so strongly about Groom Mine and, after more than 70 year of constant duress, we believe it's important that American citizens know the kind of actions the federal government and its agencies have taken against its own citizens. It is our hope that "We the People" rise up in an effort to save our property, protects the rights afforded to us and stand up against what can only be described as criminal actions taken by our government.

Q4. Best and Worst case scenarios what could happen?

For us, the ideal outcome would be keeping our land and being granted the ability to use it to its full potential. Our family's history is deeply planted within Groom Mine and we can't imagine losing it. The worst case is that our land will be taken and we will not receive the justice our family deserves. We are a very patriotic family, with combat veterans among our number. We believe in our government and their mission and we are hoping they will change their stance on condemning our property and stand up for what is right.

The Sheahan family have set up social media sites with thousands of followers across the globe to make their plight known. They have also been featured on local TV news and are becoming voices for an agitated mining community in the U.S.

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