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Lummis’ Soda Ash Bill Gets Hearing In Washington

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — A bill aimed at keeping Wyoming soda ash competitive globally is being reviewed in Washington.

The U.S. House Natural Resources Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing Thursday afternoon on a proposal to keep the 2 percent royalty rate for soda ash. The rate is scheduled to expire in October.

U.S. Rep. Cynthia Lummis says her bill is needed to help producers compete with the synthetic soda ash industry in China.

Wyoming’s Sweetwater County produces about 90 percent of soda ash in the United States and the industry employs about 3,000 people in the state.

Soda ash is the trade name for a chemical made from the mineral trona. It’s used in household cleaners, windshields and cellphones.

The United Steelworkers Union backs the bill.

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