Frac moratorium lifted - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Frac moratorium lifted


WINONA, Minn. (KTTC) -- Some Winona residents are up to their necks with the topic of Frac sand mining.  The topic could not be avoided as Winona County's three month moratorium on mining was lifted over Wednesday morning. 

At a meeting at city hall Wednesday evening, one Winona business was looking to expand.  "The city built a new dock facility. So we're required to have a CUP now in order to do sand barges," said CD Corp Vice President Dan Nisbit.

CUP or conditions use permit.  At city hall, Nisbit was looking to expand his operations on the Mississippi River.  "We're not doing any processing, any washing. It's just a direct discharge onto a barge," said Nisbit.  However his plans are not in the plans of some Winona residents.They had a chance to voice their concerns regarding traffic, sand dust, or damage to bluff lands.

The board heard the concerns, but concluded, commerce is commerce. If C. D. Corp follows the rules they can expand their operations, even if that mean 21.9 cents per mile for each ton of frac hauled.  Meanwhile, Miller Scrap, on the east side of Winona is run by the mayor, who shares the roads with frac haulers.  "The grain haulers use it. The scrap, we use it. Peerless uses it. Everybody uses it. And it's pretty hard to see how you put a road tax on one industry and not all of them," said Miller.

With the approval of expanded operations for CD Corp, the company agreed to fill an average of one barge per day with a maximum of 24 per month.  Each truck can haul 25 tons.  Each barge, 1,500 to 1,600 tons.

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