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Sargent Sand: Noise, environment among public concerns

December 14, 2016 GMT

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality may reach a decision on the Sargent Sand permit renewal later than expected after receiving many comments Monday at a Ludington hearing on the issue.

Before offering a recommendation on the permit, officials from the DEQ’s Office of Oil, Gas and Minerals will go through and investigate each comment to ensure the local sand mining site is not in violation of its permit.

“It’s possible this year that we won’t have that work done, due to the number of comments we received,” said DEQ section supervisor Adam Wygant.

Noise and concern about loss of a scarce and irreplaceable natural resource were among the main issues among community members and neighbors of the Sargent Sand site.

“I can tell you, it’s very uncommon for us to receive this kind of public concern, public interest in a renewal permit,” Wygant said.

Many people voiced concerns about the inadequacy of the site’s environmental impact assessment, which has not been updated since the 1979.

“Jimmy Carter was in the White House. ‘Grease’ was a big deal on the national stage. It is totally, totally, totally out of date,” Carol Rodwell said of the plan.

The land is worth protecting, she said.

“We have the queen of Michigan state parks up there,” Rodwell said.

See past stories on Sargent Sand and the permitting process at www.ludingtondailynews.com. Share your thoughts with us through a letter to the editor, ldn@ludingtondailynews.com.

See the full story in Tuesday’s Ludington Daily News, print or eEdition.