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  1. #1
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    'Where the Heck is Donlin?' the movie, free to stream

    "Where the Heck is Donlin?" the movie, is now available to stream on Ground Truth Trekking. Thank you everyone who has supported this project. We hope to make these kinds of films again, in the future.

    Watch Where the Heck is Donlin
    Mjölnir of Bjørn dot com is my active website.

  2. #2
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    Bjorn-
    Awesome effort on the trip, the film was more objective than I expected.

    My one constructive criticism is that you spent a fair amount of time on the discussion and comparison of mining tax revenue with other industries but continue to cite somewhat historic age tax data from 2004 that seems to make the case that mining taxes are carved in stone at 1.6%. Overall taxes on mining are a fairly dynamic calculation and much more recent economic and tax info for mining is available that results in considerably different calculated tax rates, largely due to expiration of mine construction cost credits expiring since 2004 for the large older AK mines still in operation. The film would be more ballanced and representative if the tax comparison segment were updated.

  3. #3
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    GrayJay, thank you for the feedback. The reason we chose the 2004 tax data was, at the time, we could only get the relative comparisons for all three industries, cited in the film, from 2004. The mining tax data came from Paul Seaton's office and seemed like a trustworthy and well vetted source but we also wanted a comparison to fisheries and oil, from the same year. We had research assistance with this aspect of the film and this was the best snapshot we could come up with. I hope it does not detract too much for you.
    Thanks again.
    Mjölnir of Bjørn dot com is my active website.

  5. #5
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    That’s pretty funny, a well vetted source Paul Seaton a Alaska Representative, a member of Cook Inlet Keeper, a long time commercial fisherman and the water boy for many environmental causes. Seems like bending the facts with misinformation to me, but I am not too surprised. The good news is State of Alaska has all this info. on their web site for anybody that is interested. But still a great adventure in Alaska if you had not screwed it up with your propaganda.

  6. #6
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    exp18, thank you for your opinions and criticism. We tried our best to be objective in this film. That is why we looked through, what we called, a Jay Hammond filter. We tried to ask questions based on his three criteria for industrial development in Alaska. We can only hope to do better next time. Thanks for watching and commenting.
    Mjölnir of Bjørn dot com is my active website.

  7. #7
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    Conincidently, AK miners association just released summary economics for 2012;
    Economic Benefits of Alaska's Mining Industry

    I would personally agree that the 2004 1.6% tax rate cited in the film seems like an unreasonablylow level of benefit to the state governement but this rate is definitly not representative of more recent mining tax contributions to the state.

    Mining industry in 2012 paid $137 million to State government on $3.0 billion gross production value, so a 4.5% overall tax rate. Part of what gets lost in the comparison to oil industry taxes is that the effective mining tax rate would be almost twice as high if all mines were located lands with state mineral rights but mines such as red dog are on native lands so more directly benefit the native corps instead of just the state.
    Closest recent comparison data for commercial fisheries industry I readily find is that in 2009 fisheries paid $79 million in state taxes on $1.3 billion gross catch value, so roughtly a 6.0% overall tax. So yes, effective tax rate on mining is a bit lower than fishing industry but it is on the same scale and noteworthy that mining is paying almost twice the actual $ in taxes to state government than commercial fishing.

    Back to biking, where are you planning your next trek?

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