The state Senate looks ready to send Gov. Scott Walker a bill rolling back a two-decade-old restriction on mining for metals such as gold, copper or zinc.
The Senate was scheduled to convene in session Tuesday.
Among the bills to be taken up is one to lift the state's "Prove it First" requirement for sulfide mining.
Former Gov. Tommy Thompson and lawmakers -- including Walker, then a state representative -- enacted the requirement in 1998, which requires sulfide mining applicants to prove a similar mine has operated in North America for a decade without polluting and a similar mine has been closed for 10 years without polluting.
The state Department of Natural Resources has never found any mining applications met those standards, leading critics to brand the statutes a "moratorium" on mining.
Sen. Tom Tiffany, R-Hazelhurst, sponsored the bill to scrap the requirement, calling it an impediment to creating much-needed mining jobs in economically stagnant northern Wisconsin.
The bill passed the state Assembly earlier this month.