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Winona Moratorium Ends

Two Winona, Wisc., City Council members made a last-ditch effort to extend the city’s frac sand moratorium but were denied by the rest of the council, according to a report in the Winona Daily News. The council voted 5-2 not to extend the city’s yearlong moratorium on new and expanding frac sand businesses by 120 days. The moratorium will expire March 13.

Council members Gerry Krage and Pam Eyden supported the extension, while council members Al Thurley, Michelle Alexander, Paul Double, George Borzyskowski and Mayor Mark Peterson voted against.

Thurley said he was uncomfortable with the proposal, saying it would violate state statutes since no public hearing had been held on the topic. Peterson said he was unwilling to go against the opinion of city attorney Chris Hood, who advised the council against extending the moratorium.

The council also discussed the issue of air quality and the local frac sand industry Monday, directing staff to research how on-site air monitoring of businesses with uncovered frac sand piles might work.