Americus residents not appeased with latest quarry proposal

TIPPECANOE CO., Ind. – Americus residents may have hoped the battle to keep a stone quarry from coming was over, but Thursday, Rogers Group refiled their application for construction.

However, there were a few new conditions, including only blasting on weekdays between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., and a commitment to repair any wells damaged by the quarry.

It’s not enough for those who oppose it.

“This is an issue where it’s not one of compromise. There is no compromise,” said Americus Area Community Coalition Vice President Nate Hofman. “It’s not healthy, it’s not good for the community and we don’t want it here.”

As News 18 previously reported, Rogers Group withdrew their application to build the stone quarry in May.

The company refiled their application for a zoning exception just days before the county commissioners take a final vote on an ordinance to ban the quarry’s construction.

“They would have an area that states by zoning that they could operate there, but on top of that would be an ordinance from the county itself stating that it would be prohibited,” said Tippecanoe County Commissioner Tom Murtaugh. “In that case, it looks like it would result in litigation.”

In a surprise move last month, the Tippecanoe County Commissioners voted on first reading to ban quarries from operating in populated areas.

Tom Murtaugh believes the group intentionally refiled before the second vote.

“If the ordinance passes on Monday, they can say they had their application on file prior to that ordinance being in place,” said Murtaugh.

Hoffman said he doesn’t blame Rogers Group for refiling, but said it won’t keep the coalition from trying to stop the stone quarry.

“We’re going to continue to prepare for July 7, and we’re going to put a lot of information out there and show them that this something that’s not good for our community,” said Hofman.

Murtaugh said if the ordinance to ban the quarry’s construction passes at Monday’s meeting, Rogers Group can still legally go before the county’s Board of Zoning Appeals to ask for the exception.

He says the BZA would vote on the exception at its August meeting.

The Rogers Group provided a news release to News 18 Thursday, however, has not returned our requests for an interview.

For a full list of the new conditions to the Rogers Group proposal, click here.

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