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Rock From The Road: Blog & Travelogue

March 13, 2017 – I just returned from Las Vegas, where I spent a week attending the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association (NSSGA) convention and ConExpo-Con/Agg 2017. The NSSGA...
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Prime-Time Products

Metso introduced what it called “revolutionary rock crushing technology” at ConExpo-Con/Agg in Las Vegas. The Metso MX crusher is based on the patented Multi-Action crushing technology, which combines the piston...
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Manufacturers in Focus

U.S. Tsubaki announced that in 2017, the company is celebrating its 100th anniversary. The company, a subsidiary of the Tsubakimoto Chain Co., is enjoying high growth in the North American...
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People on the Move

Thompson (Tom) S. Baker II has taken an executive role as a senior vice president of Vulcan Materials Co. Baker was previously CEO of both Patriot Transportation Holding Inc. and...
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Rock Stars

Douglas D. R. Palmore, senior vice president of customer and technical services at Luck Companies, was named the 2017 recipient of the Barry K. Wendt Memorial Commitment Award from the...
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Distributor News

Excel Machinery Ltd. will join McCloskey Washing Systems (MWS) as an official distributor offering a full range of washing and classification equipment at its locations in Texas and Oklahoma. The partnership announcement was made following ConExpo-Con/Agg, where MWS officially launched...
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Resource Center

Permit Approval Raises Eyebrows


The Town of Bridgeport, Minn.'s decision to approve two permits for a controversial frac sand mine had conflict-of-interest issues, including those involving two Planning Commission members who had family working for the mining company at the time of their vote, according to a lawsuit.

The complaint was filed in Crawford County Circuit Court a day before the Lower Wisconsin State Riverway Board is expected to vote on whether to issue a permit for a frac sand mine, which would be located near the Iowa border a few miles east of the Mississippi River, according to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

Plans for the frac sand mine are controversial because of its location partially on land that is protected for its natural beauty.

There are about 100 frac sand mines in the state. Sand in Wisconsin is used in hydraulic fracturing in other parts of the nation and world to obtain natural gas.
Some members of the Riverway Board said in a memo the mine was a bad idea but that a "loophole" in state law might require the board to approve the permit.

The lawsuit alleges Bridgeport Planning Commission members had conflicts: Linda Smrcina's son-in-law and Troy Smrcina's brother-in-law worked for the mining company when they voted on the permit. That information was not made public at the time of the vote, the filing said.

The lawsuit asks for the court to void the two permits granted by the town. An environmental organization, the Crawford Stewardship Project, and neighbors of the mine site filed the suit.

Mark Cupp, executive director of the Riverway Board, said the lawsuit should not change the board's decision-making process. The lawsuit also says zoning ordinances were violated because the town did not consider potential ill effects from the mine.