FROM FOR THE RECORD (Friday, July 18, 1997): Correction Reasons for loss: Hecla Mining Co. reported a net loss of $40 million in 1996 because of the closure and reclamation of the Grouse Creek mine in Idaho and a write-down of the American Girl mine in California. A story in Wednesday’s paper incorrectly reported the reasons for the loss.
The Idaho Supreme Court has denied Star-Phoenix Mining Co.’s request for a rehearing against Hecla Mining Co., upholding its previous decision that Hecla does not have to pay a $20 million damage award.
“This ruling represents the final chapter of a difficult issue for everyone,” Hecla Chairman Art Brown said Tuesday in a statement.
The case has been in court for six years.
In early April, the Supreme Court ruled 4-1 that Hecla properly ended a lease in 1990 when it shut down the Star-Morning mine near Wallace.
That decision overturned a Wallace jury’s decision that would have given $6 million to miners and creditors who claimed losses from Star-Phoenix when it went bankrupt.
The court earlier had ruled that $10 million in cash being held in escrow be returned to Hecla. Star-Phoenix also had to pay all Hecla’s court costs and attorney’s fees.
Star-Phoenix leased the Star-Morning mine from Hecla in 1989. After Star-Phoenix had arranged a contract with British Columbia’s Cominco Ltd., Hecla revoked the lease.
Star-Phoenix alleged that its financial problems worsened when Hecla contacted Star-Phoenix creditors.
Tuesday’s decision comes at a time when gold prices have reached a 12-year low.
Hecla posted a $40 million net loss in 1996 from fines.
Presently, the company, along with four other companies and possibly more, are named in a billion dollar federal lawsuit over natural resources damages in the Coeur d’Alene basin.
Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter
Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.