On Tuesday, June 3, the Clark County Commission will hold a public hearing on the proposed surface mining overlay map. It is a document that received impassioned feedback from Livingston Mountain residents, when it was discussed by the County Planning Commission in late 2013.
The proposed surface mining overlay map is part of an update being conducted for Clark County’s mineral resource lands regulations. Counties planning under the Growth Management Act are required to identify, designate and protect mineral resource lands that are not already characterized by urban growth and that have long-term significance for the extraction of minerals.
A Mineral Lands Task Force met 13 times between November 2011 and August 2013 to develop the recommendations for updating the SMO map, policies and standards.
In October 2013 following five hours of public testimony, the Clark County Planning Commission voted 5-0 to remove all Livingston Mountain area land parcels from the proposed surface mining overlay map, and require a traffic study. Two other significant areas, Bell Mountain and Yacolt Mountain, were also removed.
Primary concerns expressed by Livingston Mountain residents have included traffic safety, water quality and quantity, decreased property values, as well as the visual impacts of adding more rock quarry operations to the ones that already exist in the area.