MINOT, N.D. (AP) — Minot officials have withdrawn a request to rezone land for a landfill expansion, citing concerns raised by the public.

City Manager Tom Barry told the Minot Daily News the decision to withdraw the rezoning application is to ensure that the city recognizes and addresses residents' concerns. Some residents worry the landfill expansion could lower property values and suggest opening a landfill farther away from town.

"I have directed staff to withdraw the city's application to rezone the landfill expansion property to create the time and space needed to encourage those discussions," said Barry.

The Minot Planning Commission had voted last week to recommend the City Council deny the Public Works Department's proposal to rezone land the city purchased to the east and south of the current landfill. The City Council voted in April to spend $4 million to acquire the adjacent land. The sale closed in September.

The city's request and the commission's recommendation won't be on the agenda for the City Council meeting Monday.

"First and foremost, we want to ensure that we have a good process and are doing our due diligence," Barry said. "We want to take our time and address all the concerns of the neighborhood, including hosting neighborhood meetings."

Bob Hale is a landowner and developer with property near the proposed expansion. Hale said he's encouraged by the decision to withdraw the rezoning request.

"This is really a positive step and, hopefully, everyone will work together for the best long-term interest of the city," said Hale.


Information from: Minot Daily News, http://www.minotdailynews.com