Glenwood Springs throws support behind county regulation of Transfer Trail Mine | PostIndependent.com

Glenwood Springs throws support behind county regulation of Transfer Trail Mine

A truck leaves the Rocky Mountain Resources limestone quarry on lower Transfer Trail north of Glenwood Springs, on the back side of Iron Mountain.
Chelsea Self / Post Independent

As support for Glenwood Springs’ fight against Rocky Mountain Resources (RMR) continues to grow, the city has offered its own resolution of support to Garfield County.

At its Nov. 7 meeting, city council unanimously approved a resolution supporting county regulation of the Transfer Trail Mine.

Earlier this year, the Garfield County Board of County Commissioners concluded that RMR’s Transfer Trail Mine operation was not in compliance with the applicable resolutions and special use permit.

“There was a hearing on a notice of violation. A couple hundred citizens attended that hearing. The representatives of RMR stood up at that hearing and said, ‘We are going to be good neighbors. We are going to work on resolving these issues,’” Karl Hanlon, Glenwood Springs city attorney, said. “Five days later they filed suit in both federal and state court alleging that Garfield County had no authority to regulate them whatsoever.”

RMR has filed a plan with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) that proposes a 5,000% expansion of its current mining operation.

Additionally, RMR, which has offices in Los Angeles and Denver, wants to mine 24 hours a day, blast from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and haul out as many as 500 trucks per day.

“We view this as a serious threat to our community with long lasting implications,” Jeff Peterson, Glenwood Springs Citizens’ Alliance executive director, said. “We have had almost 2,000 residents sign a petition opposing this and have a couple hundred businesses on board as well.”

According to the resolution, which council quickly threw its support behind, mining and logging comprise only 0.3% of the local economy.

The resolution also stated that the RMR mine expansion was the greatest threat to the life, health, safety and future of Glenwood Springs.

Also in attendance was former Glenwood Springs mayor and current president of the Glenwood Springs Citizens’ Alliance Leo McKinney.

“This resolution really draws a line in the sand,” McKinney said. “But, you guys didn’t draw that line, the company up on the hill drew that line and it’s pretty obvious which side you need to be on.”

Additionally, the resolution directed city staff to pursue “any and all” methods to oppose the mine expansion.

mabennett@postindependent.com


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