State files lawsuit on access to mining claims

The state has filed a lawsuit in a fight over access to mining claims near Chicken.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner said the state’s lawsuit filed Wednesday challenges the federal government’s assertion that it has ownership of multiple trail rights of way around the Taylor Highway community.

Chicken traditionally has been used by miners to access their claims, but access has been restricted in recent years by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

Gov. Sean Parnell says the federal government is over-reaching. The state has specified six trails in the lawsuit that total 65 miles and encompass a 400-square-mile area. The state says all the trails originate in Chicken, located at 68 Mile Taylor Highway, and were established by gold miners more than 100 years ago.

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