A court hearing on the citizens' appeal of the first frac sand mine permitted by Winona County will be held Thursday in Rochester.
Attorneys for the appellant and for Winona County will present oral arguments before a panel of three Minnesota Court of Appeals judges at the Olmsted County Government Center.
A group of 12 Winona County citizens filed the appeal in April of 2013 after the Winona County Board of Commissioners voted 3-2 not to order an Environmental Impact Statement on the Nisbit frac sand mine in Saratoga Township.
The majority of the Commissioners voted against the EIS despite serious concerns brought forward by neighbors and area residents. The citizens' group later filed a second appeal of the County Board's June 4, 2013, decision - also a 3-2 vote - to issue a Conditional Use Permit for the mine. The two cases have been consolidated and will be heard together.
The Nisbit mine is at the center of a cluster of at least six other frac sand mines proposed in Saratoga Township and neighboring Pilot Mound Township, in Fillmore County.
More than 30 local residents have provided the financial support needed for the legal actions......