The writer of “Castle Storming 101” badly mischaracterizes the July board meeting in the Town of Farmington. Residents, yes residents, were listening outside the windows because the room was full, even standing room taken. There were over a hundred in the room, more outside the hall, and nearly all were residents of either the Town of Farmington or the Village of Osceola. He ignores the fact that, in less than a week, the EcoClub from Osceola High School, and others, gathered 365 signatures. Again, most of these were from the Village or the Town.
Even more unfortunately, he incorrectly states the citizens’ concerns as only a threat to the beauty of the area (apparently unimportant), few local jobs and the potential failure of frac sand mining. He ignores that most of the discussion revolved around health concerns caused by the impact on air and water quality. He also ignores the further discussions of the impact on the local medical center and elder care facilities, the loss in property values and the damage to tourism. According to a recent survey conducted by the Osceola Chamber of Commerce, 57% of local businesses surveyed thought the mine would have a negative effect on the local economy (30% thought positive).
He also dismisses those citizens affected, mainly from the village that virtually surrounds the mine, as NIMBYS. But of course, it is not his property values that are going down, not his well or water at risk, and he does not get to sit on his porch in the evening listening to the mining equipment until 9 most evenings.
And those who are concerned about the mine’s impact on their neighbors, he calls “enviro-activists” and “anti-everything activists.” Instead, he urges the board to act on behalf of those constituents who weren't there because they “don't really care.” I think this comment speaks for itself.