Development Permits LLC, owned by coal operator John Wellford III, is nearing a permit for the 649-acre Upland Area III surface mine, located near Belle in Kanawha County, W.Va.
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection database shows that the mine permit application for this project, which was filed in October 2009, moved on April 11 from a DEP regional office to the agency’s main office for final approval. The DEP can usually, unless there is some particular environmental opposition to a project, approve a permit within a month or two of that step.
Upland Area III would be a contour and area mine working the 5 Block and 6 Block coal seams and associated seam splits. This is the only pending mine permit application for Development Permits and the company has no mine permits currently issued in its name.
U.S. Office of Surface Mining data shows that the company was first listed with that agency in 2009 and that Wellford, who is also associated with Marsh Fork Development and Upper Kanawha Valley Development, is the 100% owner of Development Permits.