Jesse Morrow mine back up for public hearing

Cemex plans to mine Jesse Morrow Mountain for aggregateCemex plans to mine Jesse Morrow Mountain for aggregateFresno County will once again take up the proposed Jesse Morrow Mountain aggregate mine east of Sanger during a public hearing conducted by the planning commission on May 30.

The planning commission last discussed the project during a public hearing on Feb. 9 following the release of its final environmental impact report in mid-December.

Now, the public will have another chance to weigh in on the project before the planning commission decides whether or not to move the Mexican aggregate company Cemex's requests for a conditional use permit on to the Board of Supervisors.

The hearing will begin at 11 a.m. in the Fresno County Ballroom located at 2220 Tulare St.

Anyone may testify about the project while the planning commission will also accept written testimony in the form of letters, petitions, statements, etc. All such documents should be submitted to the Fresno County Public Works and Planning Department prior to the hearing date.

Sited on the southern side of Jesse Morrow Mountain along Highway 180 east of Sanger, the 824 acre project calls for a hard rock extraction and conveyer system, a concrete batch plant, an asphalt plant, a recycling plant, truck distribution and support facilities.

With 155 acres set aside for bench mining, operations are expected to continue for 50 years, producing around 1.5 million tons of aggregate a year. Another 384 acres will be used as a buffer to conceal the project from traffic and residents nearby.

The mine was proposed to Fresno County around 10 years ago as an ideal source of aggregate material used in concrete, plaster, stucco or general fill in construction projects.

Dozens of neighboring residents and groups have protested the project over the years, citing concerns over pollution, aesthetic problems and the devastation of land sacred to the native Choinumni people.