Harte Gold’s Sugar Zone mine is preparing to conduct mining operations with in-house employees.

The switch to using direct workers instead of a contractor is to coincide with the mine’s re-start of operations, which is currently in the planning stages, the company announced this week.

Sugar Zone has relied upon North Bay-based contractor Redpath Mining since it opened in the fall of 2018. The mine has been shut down since March to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Though an exact re-start date has yet to be set, “the company completed a detailed re-start and 18-month operating plan, which will see the mine return to (a production rate of) 800 tpd (tonnes per day) by the end of the year,” a news release said.

“In the meantime, the care and maintenance teams continue to keep the mine in good stead for recommencement of operations,” the release said.

The company is in the process of arranging financing for the purchase of a fleet of mining vehicles, the release said.

Sugar Zone, located about a 40-minute drive north of White River, employs about 130 people at the mine site during normal operations.

(This story was originally published on June 27, 2020)

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