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This Week’s Market Buzz


  • According to The Cap Times, five Republican lawmakers from western Wisconsin, the heart of the state's frac sand mining boom, are expressing concerns over a Republican bill that would strip local government control to regulate the industry. In a letter to the authors of Senate Bill 349, the lawmakers – Reps. Dean Knudson of Hudson, Thomas Larson of Colfax, Mary Williams of Medford, Kathleen Bernier of Chippewa Falls and Howard Marklein of Spring Green – said while the state and the nation have “benefited greatly from the mines,” and the development of the industry has been “largely positive,” local communities expect and deserve to have a voice in regulating the mines.
  • Buffalo County, Wis., recommended that its Board of Adjustment approve a conditional-use zoning permit for a frac sand mining project in the town of Dover near Independence, Wis. According to the Winona, Minn., Daily News, River Valley Sands of Utica, Minn., has lease agreements for extracting and hauling frac sand on agricultural lands owned by four families. The company wants to mine 24 million tons of sand over the course of 20 to 30 years, opening and closing 5 to 10 acres at a time on five parcels of non-contiguous property. River Valley Sands has said it would employ 26 workers on site and create hauling work for as many as 50 truck drivers, who would move about 200 loads of sand daily to Winona and Wabasha.
  • A recall election has been set for Glenwood City, Wis., where an effort has been underway to unseat the city's mayor and two city council members over a contentious frac sand mine issue, according to TwinCities.com. Enough signatures on petitions to recall Mayor John Larson and city council members Nancy Hover and Dave Graese have been validated to trigger a recall election, and the city council set the election date for Dec. 17, said City Clerk Shari Rosenow. The recall effort began after a closed-session meeting between the city council and representatives of Texas-based Vista Sand, which earlier this year applied with St. Croix County for a permit to mine land in the town of Glenwood.