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Town of Otter Creek Reacts to Proposed Sand Mine

Written By: Jerry Hanson  |  Posted: Thursday, November 10th, 2011

             This past Thursday evening the Town Board of the Town of Otter Creek requested and received from the town's people "Village Powers." This move by the town board was prompted by the recent application from Gerald Martinson to allow High Country Sand Co. (formerly Great Northern Sand Co.) of Winona, Minnesota to establish a silica sand mining operation on his farm in the town of Otter Creek, near Augusta, Wisconsin. This is the first formal application for a silica sand mine in Eau Claire County.

            Those attending the meeting of the Town Board of Otter Creek, seemed split between those opposed to the mining operation and those in favor of it. Some want the farming character of the town to remain unchanged, others were concerned about the truck traffic, and others inquired about the affects of the mine on the water table. Others were supportive, siting employment opportunities, property rights, and the reclamation plan which requires the land to be restored to agricultural use as the mining proceeds.

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