On Tuesday, July 20th, 2021, Reuters published an article reporting that after signing an $840 million deal with Tesla last fall for building a lithium mine to supply batteries for Electric Vehicles, Piedmont Lithium (NASDAQ:PLL) has continually failed to apply for both a state mining permit and a necessary zoning variance in Gaston County where the mine is to be built, despite promising investors since 2018 that they would do so. Per Reuters, this has led to five of the seven members of the Board of Commissioners for Gaston County stating that they may halt or delay the project.

Following the news of this alleged failure to notify the proper authorities of its intentions, Piedmont Lithium’s stock plummeted nearly 20% on Tuesday, July 20th, 2021, causing significant losses for investors.

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Piedmont Lithium's Empty Promises To Investors

According to Reuters, In September 2018, Piedmont Lithium said it would be obtaining the proper permits for its mine by the end of the following year. In August of 2019, the news article says, the company promised it would apply for the permits “in the coming months,” with management saying they could not think of any reason why the county would not approve the project. In December 2019, Piedmont again pushed the date forward, stating that it expected to obtain local zoning approval by June of 2020.

Per Reuters, Piedmont Lithium now states it “didn’t really have the time or resources” to keep the Gaston County Commissioners in the loop. The already crumbling relationship between the county and company was allegedly strained even further after a meeting that was to be held in March of 2021 was cancelled by Piedmont three days before the date.

The mine that Piedmont Lithium plans to build would include a 500 foot deep open-air pit, as well as facilities to produce lithium based electric car battery chemicals.

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