The Goodhue County Planning Advisory Commission voted Monday night not to extend the county's mining moratorium. All that remains is final approval by the County Board for the moratorium to automatically expire Sept. 6.
The unanimous recommendation came after a nearly two-hour public hearing, and echoed the recommendation made July 8 by the county’s Mining Study Committee.This was the best exchange:
"We're very concerned about frac-sand mining from a tourism point of view," Lake City Tourism Bureau President Greg Schreck said.
Schreck asked the commissioners if they knew the exact value of tourism along the Mississippi River from Goodhue County to the Iowa border.
"You should have that at the top of your list," Schreck said. "It's over $200 million, and it's probably going to double in the next five years if we maintain an environment that will support it."
PAC and County Commissioner Dan Rechtzigel responded to Schreck's comments by asking if he read the county's revised mining ordinance, to which Schreck admitted that he had not.
"I would not call our ordinance careless," Rechtzigel said. "I think that is disrespectful to the committee that worked on it, and especially if you haven't read it."
PAC Commissioner Bernie Overby added that the ordinance allows the county to put provisions in conditional-use permits to adequately protect citizens. "And we will do that," he said.Touché.