Aug 12, 2013 2:28 AM by Van Nguyen

Bisbee may close Queen Mine Tour

BISBEE, Ariz. - A popular tourist attraction in Bisbee is in danger of being shut down, and that has some leaders concerned about the city's finances.

Freeport McMoRan met with Bisbee officials on Friday and told them it's terminating the operational lease for the Queen Mine Tour.

The company cited "various safety concerns" including radon gas found in the mines.

Bisbee was told it would get "60 days notice" of lease termination this week.

The Queen Mine Tour draws in a lot of tourists to the Bisbee area.

According to a city news release, last year more than 43,000 people paid admission to take the tour.

In the last 5 years, the tour brought in nearly half a million dollars in tour revenue, and $130,000 in merchandise revenue.

If the Queen Mine Tour closes, city leaders worry they'll experience a reduction in sales tax collections.

They've also spent a lot of money on capital improvements to increase safety on the property.

The matter has been referred to the city attorney.


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