MADISON, Wis. -

The leader of the state Senate's new mining committee said he has scheduled a series of hearings next month to gather information on possible regulatory changes.

Sen. Tim Cullen, a Janesville Democrat and chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Mining, said the panel plans to meet Sept. 18, Sept. 20 and Sept. 25 in the state Capitol.

The hearings will focus on Wisconsin's current mining laws and how they could be changed. He said the panel wants to either develop recommendations for legislation or craft a bill outright.

Talks fell through earlier this year on a bill to help Florida-based Gogebic Taconite open a $1.5 billion iron mine in northwest Wisconsin. The measure passed the Assembly but died in the Senate.