St. Charles Township: "crystal clear" no on Minnesota Proppant frac sand processing
Brian Todd reports in the Rochester Post Bulletin article St. Charles Township sends 'crystal clear' message on frac sand facility:
There can be no question now. The people of St. Charles Township have spoken. And now the chairman of the township board has spoken. Minnesota Proppant's proposed sand-loading rail facility is not wanted.
Jim Ruhberg, chairman of the township council, spoke Tuesday night at the St. Charles City Council meeting, telling the city's leaders that the township — from its residents to its township board — is against the project.
"We will side with our residents and say we oppose this project," Ruhberg said. "Everyone who has come forward has spoken against it, and we feel this represents the majority of our residents. We agree with the wishes of most of our residents and oppose this project." . . .
As readers may recall, the draft EAW for Minnesota Proppant calls for annexation of the property in St. Charles Township by the City of St. Charles. Annexation--which helps get around those pesky neighbors and their property rights and values--seems to be emerging as another "best practice" for the industrial sand industry as it seeks more friendly government officials to do its bidding, regardless of what the local citizenry wants.
But the City of Charles might have a lot less wiggle room after Tuesday night's meeting. Todd reports:
Ruhberg asked St. Charles Mayor William Spitzer if he had any questions regarding the township's feelings. "Does that clarify our position?"
"Crystal clear," Spitzer said. "Thanks."
. . .Half a dozen residents also spoke out against the project, including representatives from Concerned Citizens for St. Charles, a group that has collected 1,055 signatures asking to city to adopt a resolution forbidding the processing, loading and mining of silica sand.
Winona County's St. Charles, home to 3,735 according to the 2010 census, promotes itself as the gateway to Whitewater State Park.
Here's the resolution that the City Council of Red Wing is sending to the Minnesota Legislature Note that Mayor Egan, who is lobbying for the Minnesota Industrial Sand Council, recused himself from signing the Resolution.
Here's the signed resolution; Frac Sand Mayor Dennis Egan had to recuse himself:
Photos: Will St. Charles remain the Gateway to Whitewater State Park--or to Mordor? (above); The sunlight shines down on pretty Red Wing (below).
If you enjoyed reading this post, consider giving a donation via paypal: