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Stop asphalt plant from coming to Becker County

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I am writing to get the word out to the community about a proposal for an asphalt plant that could be coming to our residential area. There is a conditional use permit at Becker County Zoning for a portable asphalt plant that will be on a residence on 330th avenue for a five year lease to start with. The plant would be in operation from May thru October with proposed hours from 6 a.m. – 10 p.m. weekdays and occasional Saturdays as needed.

There will be multitudes of trucks hauling south on 330th avenue to their required destinations. That means the trucks will be hauling on County Hwy 29 north or south and will be going down County Hwy 54 or thru Frazee or to County Hwy 34. This means added wear on our roads and increased traffic and noise.

Besides that, the plant would bring air pollution, the smell of asphalt cooking, the constant sound of heavy machinery and rocks crushing, and potential sickness for people exposed.

Facts from the EPA state that asphalt processing is a major source of air pollutants and release cancer causing toxins in the air such as arsenic, benzene, formaldehyde, and cadmium. Exposure to these air toxins can cause cancer, central nervous system problems, liver damage, respiratory problems, skin irritation and birth defects.

This is a very serious issue that our area needs to be aware of, and this proposal can only be stopped by multitudes of public support.

Please help and attend the public hearing meeting with the Board of Commissioners on Tuesday, March 19 at 7 p.m. at the Becker County Court House. Also, everyone please contact your county commissioners or send letters to zoning at 915 Lake Avenue Detroit Lakes, MN, 56501 or e-mail them to zoning@co.becker.mn.us before noon on March 19 and voice your concerns.

If we don’t have your support, this whole community will be affected by this asphalt plant that is owned by a company out of Brainerd. How fair is this to our local gravel businesses to give this opportunity to a company that’s not from our area?

For more information, please contact Becker County Zoning at 846-7314. This is something that we definitely don’t need in our community. Please get the word out and tell all your neighbors and this can be prevented with your support! Thanks so much for your time. — Jane VonRuden, Frazee

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