Lafarge meeting set for May

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Routt County commissioners will discuss Lafarge's proposed South Valley gravel pit May 16.

The meeting comes about two years after the controversial permit application was tabled.

The meeting marks the last step in the special-use permit process for Lafarge, Routt County Planner John Eastman said. If a decision is made, it could be appealed only through the court system.

At an April 2003 meeting, county commissioners tabled their decision on Lafarge's River Valley Resource site. They told Lafarge not to return with plans for the pit until there was more information on several issues.

That additional information included a wetlands permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, a solution on the proposed relocation of the Suttle Ditch and more.

Some of those details came in last fall, so county planning staff scheduled a meeting for Dec. 8. But there was not a resolution on the Suttle Ditch, and the meeting had to be canceled.

Recently, Lafarge reached an agreement with owners of the Suttle Ditch so the ditch can be relocated, Eastman said. With that final piece of information in hand, the county scheduled the meeting.

The River Valley Resource site proposal to mine gravel on a 128-acre site along Colorado Highway 131 caused heated discussions in 2003. It has continued to spark debate.

The proposed site is more than 1,000 feet from Highway 131 on the east side. It is just north of Routt County Road 18, or the turnoff to Catamount Ranch.

The proposal includes mining for gravel in five phases, as well as operating a permanent concrete plant, seasonal crushing and screening plant, and a washing plant, with an estimated operating life of 13 to 15 years.

Eastman said county commissioners are expecting a crowd to attend. Only public comment related to new information will be accepted, Eastman said. In the original meeting about two years ago, full public comment was taken and then was closed, he said.

Routt County commissioners will consider Lafarge's proposed River Valley Resource gravel pit at 6:30 p.m. May 16 at Centennial Hall.

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