The Spokane Valley City Council wasted little time extending its existing mining moratorium Tuesday night.
However, most of the dust surrounding the once-controversial issue has settled.
While the council did adopt a six-month extension to the moratorium – put in place while the city studies proposed amendments to its existing comprehensive plan, including mining uses in industrial zones – it opted to exempt two existing sites.
Eden Pit, owned by Spokane County, could be sold, and it was feared by county engineers that the ban could disrupt those plans. Flora Pit was also exempted.
Representatives from both Spokane County and Central Pre-Mix were on hand to say they were pleased with the compromise.
“I’m just happy we were able to protect our interests without impacting businesses,” said Council Mayor Dean Grafos before the council made its unanimous decision.
The moratorium doesn’t affect existing mining operations or sites. It does, however, prohibit new mining applications from being filed with the city along with related operations such as excavation, mineral product manufacturing, mineral processing and stockpiling.