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Glenwood City Council tentatively approves frac sand mine agreement

GLENWOOD CITY, Wis. -- The Glenwood City Council this week tentatively approved an agreement with a Texas company to operate a frac sand mine within city limits less than a half-mile from a public school.

With two council members objecting, Monday’s move comes after 18 months of controversy. Contract negotiations with Vista Sand have been ongoing since the results of a recall election last December gave the board a mandate to work with Vista.

Approval of the final document is scheduled for March 10.

The council agreed to an initial 20-year term to be automatically renewed for an additional 10 years if Vista’s permits are in order. Vista agreed to a 3-cent-per-ton royalty increase every five years. The board reserved the right to review the agreement being worked out independently between Vista and the school district.

Mayor John Larson said the council has two major issues yet to address. Members must decide whether to annex the property targeted by Vista for the mine. They also will have to decide whether they want to be responsible for negotiating the reclamation terms of the project or defer that responsibility to St. Croix County and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.