Bill would ensure Wisconsin locals can't stop blasting

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Associated Press | October 18, 2013

MADISON — A Wisconsin legislator has proposed a bill that would scale back local governments' ability to regulate sand mines and blasting.

Republican Sen. Tom Tiffany's bill would ensure local governments can't regulate sand mines using their so-called police powers — their ability to regulate health, safety and welfare. They could still regulate the mines through zoning ordinances, however.

The measure also would prohibit locals from regulating blasting activities.

The bill comes as Ashland County officials consider an ordinance controlling blasting work on a proposed iron mine just south of Lake Superior.

Tiffany is looking for co-sponsors to sign onto the bill by Monday.

The Sierra Club's Wisconsin chapter is criticizing the bill as an assault on local control. A message left with the Wisconsin Counties Association wasn't immediately returned.

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