State and Province News December 2012
To keep up to date with this breakdown of news in the United States and Canada, visit www.AggMan.com for daily updates.
By Therese Dunphy, Editor-in-Chief
Jeffrey Lee Sykes faces charges of unoccupied burglary, grand theft, possession of burglary tools, and criminal mischief following his arrest at Cemex’s operation on Pug Mill Road in Kissimmee. The Orlando Sentinel reports that Sykes was caught in an undercover burglary sting at the site. Detectives who set up at the operation because of burglaries there spotted him entering a fenced portion of the property with “a bag of burglary tools and copper wiring” the newspaper reports.
On Oct. 10, a 55-year-old contract painter with 35 years of experience was killed at a kaolin and ball clay operation. According to the Mine Safety and Health Administration, he was standing on the bottom of a 40-foot high, 50-foot diameter tank that was open to the atmosphere and covered with mesh cloth material. He was spraying coal tar on the inside walls of the tank and was found unconscious by co-workers. He was recovered by emergency personnel and pronounced dead at a hospital.
Mississippi Sand has received the necessary permits for a silica sand mine next to Starved Rock State Park, the News Tribune reports. The permits include provisions for pollution control measures such as baghouses, application of water, building enclosures, paving, and sweeping. “In complying with the applicable laws and regulations, the Illinois EPA is confident that this facility will not have a significant effect on ambient air quality,” the agency noted in a press release.
Pike Industries won a long-term zoning dispute that will allow the company to continue blasting at its site. According to Mainebiz, the Westbrook City Council voted to change zoning to include performance standards for the quarry that align with an agreement reached by Pike and neighboring business Idexx Laboratories, which complained that its blasting was affecting the laboratory’s ability to manufacture sensitive scientific instruments. That agreement was subsequently challenged by two other neighboring businesses, and that challenge was partially upheld by the state Supreme Judicial Court. The court found that the city couldn’t legally enforce limitations on quarry operations without passing performance standards, such as details on when and how often it could blast. Those performance standards are now in place.
Rocky Bullard III, president of Michigan Mining LLC, told The Daily News of Iron Mountain that he would like to clean up the company’s former 2,200-acre Groveland Mine property in the Upper Peninsula’s Dickinson County and convert it to an aggregate mine. The former iron pellet mine was closed in 1981, but has rail and road access. At its height, the mine employed 500 people.
Police in Brooklyn Center arrested seven protestors at a conference on silica sand mining. According to Associated Press reports, the protestors were arrested after they climbed on top of a bus scheduled to carry conference participants to tour silica sand mines in Wisconsin. The protestors climbed on top of the buses and displayed anti-mining banners. The seven were charged with unlawful assembly and released.
The Lafayette quarry formerly known as Limescrest is now owned by Braen Family and doing business as Braen Stone of Sparta. The operation was started by Thomas Edison more than 100 years ago, according to The Sparta Independent.