North Forty News
At 10:30 p.m. on August 22, the six members of the Larimer County Planning Commission who were present voted in favor of granting Loveland Ready-Mix’s request for a special review, allowing the company to mine gravel and install a batch plant on 123 acres of land close to downtown LaPorte. The Commission’s favorable recommendation will now go to the Larimer County Commissioners who will make the final decision in September.
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Beginning at 6:30 p.m., the Commissioners listened to comments from LaPorte residents held over from a meeting the week before when time ran out. Rebuttal by the applicant, Loveland Ready-Mix, followed. Representatives of the company refuted several assertions made by those in opposition to the gravel pit and also agreed to a long list of conditions in order to make their operation less objectionable to members of the community.
Commission members had an opportunity to ask questions of the Larimer County Planning Department before each of them shared reasons for their decision with the audience. They expressed their appreciation for all the citizen input they had received. “We do listen and you are not discounted,” Commission Chair Jeff Jensen said.
They agreed that the decision had been a difficult one. They recognized that change is hard but pointed out that it can be a good thing. They praised Loveland Ready-Mix for agreeing to 42 conditions requested by LaPorte residents. They pointed out state law allowing for the removal of gravel where it is found as taking priority over other uses and the need for concrete in a fast-growing area. Mining will be restricted to a 12-year period to be followed by completion of reclamation within the following five years.
“We are volunteers because we love Larimer County and the public process,” Jensen said referring to his fellow Commissioners.