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(1) The extraction of mineral resources is essential to the economic well being of the County and the needs of the society.
(2) Certain privately owned land areas of the County contain significant amounts of mineral resources. Mineral Resources Overlays are created to protect these resources for present and future extractions. Since mineral extraction must take place on the physical site where the minerals naturally occur, special controls are needed to minimize conflicts with other land uses. The Mineral Resources Overlay functions as a “holding district” since the land will be redesignated and reclaimed for other land uses when mining operations cease. Also, the district will insure that land disturbances are minimized through regulations and through the prohibition of any other land uses in these districts that are incompatible with mining.
(3) Once the mining activity ceases, the mined lands shall be reclaimed for new uses in order to prevent or minimize adverse effects on the environment and to protect the public health, safety and welfare.
(b) Objectives. The MR Overlay shall have the following objectives:
(1) Prevent or minimize all adverse environmental effects.
(2) Reclaim mined lands to a usable condition that is readily adaptable for alternative land uses.
(3) Encourage the production and conservation of minerals while preserving areas relating to environmental and recreational amenities if such amenities are located within the mining locale.
(4) Eliminate residual hazards to the public health and safety.
(Ord. 4011, passed - -2007)