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Purchase and Exchange of State Lands for Mining

Warner attorneys represented a global limestone producer in the largest negotiation, purchase and exchange of lands from the state of Michigan in modern history, comprising in excess of 10,000 surface and mineral acres. Over a period of several years, we assisted the client in acquiring limestone mining rights from the state by leading negotiations with elected state officials and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR), by lobbying and guiding legislation facilitating the purchase through the Michigan legislature, and performing the necessary title and environmental due diligence for the project. The transaction required identifying and acquiring severed mineral interests and fee title properties desired by the State to exchange for the limestone mining rights acquired from the State. Ultimately, we were able to help craft an innovative offer that State officials and the MDNR concluded offered real value to the state and its citizens, and merited exercising the MDNR’s discretion to approve the deal.