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Thursday, January 07, 2016

Ind. Gov't. - Still more on: Singleton Quarry controversy continues

Updating this ILB post from Oct. 28, 2015, Bill Dolan reports today in the NWI Times:

CROWN POINT — Lake County Surveyor Bill Emerson Jr. is letting operators of a controversial quarry near Lowell resume work.

Emerson said Wednesday he is lifting a stop-work order he issued last week after reviewing and approving new plans for a redesign of drainage ponds being excavated on the 600-acre site to hold ground water to be pumped out of the quarry.

"Absolutely ridiculous," Linda Cosgrove, a Lowell resident, said after learning of the decision. She has opposed the excavation on grounds the quarry-pumping could dry local wells and flood downstream drainage ditches. * * *

Cosgrove raised fresh concerns late last year that workers were digging the ponds in different locations than those specified to state and local officials.

Emerson said Wednesday the ponds had to be relocated to avoid damaging historic artifacts. Workers last summer found human remains believed to be from prehistoric communities.

Cosgrove said the location of the archaeological sites had been known for years. She also complained, "They were blasting stone last week contrary to a Sept. 24 letter issued by Emerson that there would be no blasting until requested documents are in. They weren't in and blasted anyway."

Emerson said it was a misunderstanding between him and Singleton. "I told them don't take any stone out of there until I know the (ponds') capacity is the same after the redesign. They came up with the calculations, gave them to me, but went ahead and blasted before we could review."

Emerson said the new design will increase the capacity of the ponds to hold groundwater drainage out of local ditches during storm flooding.

He said Singleton can resume rock removal for site construction, but his staff must verify the design for the finished stormwater drainage system before they start commercial production.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on January 7, 2016 11:00 AM
Posted to Indiana Government