The Utah Senate has passed a bill which protects gravel pits and mining businesses from local interference.
Originally failing in the House, H.B. 288 bounced back to the Utah Senate, where it was amended and passed late Thursday night.
The Utah House passed the amended version of H.B. 288, sending the bill to Gov. Gary Herbert's desk.
If the bill is signed, it would make it more difficult for local cities to have a say over where gravel pits or mining business can and cannot operate.
The passing of H.B. 288 in the Utah Senate came just days after the Utah Department of Health urged Lehi City to hold off on allowing new mining operations at Point of the Mountain until a study can be completed about the potential health impacts on the people who live nearby.
Some people also believe that the development of H.B. 288 was a response to Geneva Rock's withdrawal of its proposal to expand its mining efforts at Point of the Mountain back in September.
On Thursday Evening, Alliance for a Better Utah issued the following statement:
It is flabbergasting that the Legislature would so blatantly choose business interests over the health of Utah families by granting extra protection to gravel pits. Clean air is vital to the health of Utahns, and this bill could limit the future ability of impacted communities to regulate debris and dust pollution in their neighborhoods. Utah’s population is projected to double over the next several decades, and we should make sure our communities have the flexibility they need to adapt to exponential growth in the coming years. Communities should be able to make decisions based on what is best for residents, not what is best for big business.
2News has not received word from advocates for H.B. 288.