Draper City has indefinitely postponed a public hearing on Geneva Rock’s application to expand mining operations at the Point of the Mountain.
The city announced its decision to postpone the hearing after it declared a state of emergency in early March due to the spread of COVID-19 in Salt Lake County. City officials in Utah are grappling with the best way to hold public meetings as social distancing measures limit gatherings to no more than 10 people.
“Given the heightened public interest on Geneva’s application, we felt it would be prudent to postpone the meeting until the public had an opportunity to participate in person,” said Draper Mayor Troy Walker.
Dave Kallas, spokesman for Geneva Rock, said the company understands Draper’s decision to postpone the meeting and appreciates the measures the city is taking to protect residents while also giving them a voice.
“At some point, if they decide to a virtual meeting or some other electronic form, we will support it and will be ready when they are,” Kallas said.
In February, the city’s planning commission recommended against Geneva’s proposal to the City Council because of the tsunami of public comment against it. Draper residents packed the commission chambers to voice their concerns about the expansion.
Geneva’s proposal looks to expand its mining operations by 27 acres at the Point of the Mountain while also leaving nearly 50 acres open for potential development. It also includes a 43 acre gift of land to Draper City and several acres of open space for the public to use.
Residents have clashed with the company since 2018 on the proposal because of health and environmental concerns. Many worry about the health impacts from the silica dust that is kicked up during mining.