Asbestos Resource Program manager accepts job with Hecla

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Nick Raines, manager of the Lincoln County Asbestos Resource Program, announced last week he is moving on to a new job.

“We got a pretty good blow yesterday,” said Lincoln County Commissioner Mark Peck on Friday, the morning after Raines gave his notice. “That is a huge, huge gap to fill, but he’s just been a fantastic guy in there.”

The Asbestos Resource Program, or ARP, operates out of the Lincoln County Environmental Health Department. Established in 2012 to provide education and outreach about asbestos exposure as a result of the Libby Asbestos Superfund site, the program is funded by a cooperative agreement and grant from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Raines will work for Hecla Mining Company in a newly created position, according to Luke Russell, the company’s vice president of external affairs.

“Nick will assume the role of environmental coordinator to assist in project permitting and compliance and will be involved in all our Montana endeavors,” Russell said via email. “We are very pleased to have someone of his background and experience join us.”

Those endeavors will include Hecla’s proposed Montanore and Rock Creek mines as well as the reclamation underway at the company’s Troy Mine, Russell wrote.

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