Whitesburg KY
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OSM gets director


The former director of the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement’s Pittsburgh office will run the entire agency.

Brent Wahlquist, 65, the agency’s acting director since 2005, was confirmed to be its director on Aug. 3 by the Senate. Before becoming acting director, Wahlquist served as OSM’s Pittsburgh based Appalachian regional director, overseeing the agency’s program in a sevenstate area for three years.

Wahlquist, who was born in Utah and raised in Idaho, has been with the agency for 24 years. The agency has an annual budget of about $298 million. Its mission is to balance coal production with protection of the environment.

He lives in Pennsylvania’s Washington County.

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