Neighbors organize to fight proposed sand mine


by Shawn Chitnis &

Posted on November 26, 2012 at 7:43 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 11 at 12:21 PM

GREEN BLUFF, Wash. -- People living near a proposed mining site are organizing against a project they worry will increase traffic and disrupt their quiet neighborhood.

Spokane County has a public meeting scheduled for Wednesday at which officials will consider giving a permit to the property owner to move forward with his plans.

Neighbors, who have been very vocal against the project, plan to attend Wednesday's meeting to address their concerns that an increase in large truck traffic will put their kids at risk.

The site is located a couple miles east of Colbert Elementary School and Mountainside Middle School, south of E. Greenbluff Road and north of Day Mount Spokane Road.

Fred Brown, who owns property, said he is just removing unwanted sand.

“My project is not a commercial use,” Brown said in an email to KREM 2 News back in September. “I am trying to improve my land, not devalue it. I want to use my land for pasture and keeping horses.”
Brown described the dig as a grading project on 20 acres of his property. He said the sand removal is necessary for his plans.
“Unfortunately, it has a lot of sand on it so I am partnering with someone with expertise to remove the sand,” the email added.

Neighbors said they chose to live where they do because of the quiet, calm setting. Opponents argue the land is designated for rural conservation.
"This is the wildlife corridor,” neighbor Dan Burton added. “It has animals, we've had moose, we've had deer, we've had rabbits, and nobody's talking for them."
Brown says part of the process to get a permit for the project requires evaluations on environmental impact.

Neighbors are unhappy the permit meeting is scheduled for 1:30 p.m., and hope the early time does not prevent opponents from attending.