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EIR Approved for Quarry Expansion

A plan to expand Northern Aggregates’ Harris Quarry south of Willits, Calif., cleared a hurdle when the Mendocino County, Calif., board of supervisors unanimously certified the environmental impact report (EIR) for the project and approved zoning changes to allow an asphalt plant at the site. According to the Ukiah Daily Journal, the project would allow Northern Aggregates to rezone about 18 acres of the land to accommodate the proposed asphalt plant.

The next stop for the p­roposal is the Mendocino County Planning Commission, which will consider issuing the company a use permit for the asphalt plant and a renewal of the mining operation's permit, which will include a review of the quarry's reclamation plan. The plan has drawn local opposition over concerns about toxic contaminants that could be released into the air from the asphalt plant operations, along with concerns about water pollution, noise, nighttime lighting, geologic instability on the hillside, traffic problems on Highway 101 and worries that the applicant would not honor mitigation measures.