Counts Construction Company gets unanimous vote adding 40 acres to their sand mine

Published: Feb. 7, 2023 at 10:23 PM EST
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OCALA, Fla. (WCJB) - Residents and workers from Counts Construction Company LLC packed the Marion County commission meeting room.

Some expressed concerns about making this operation even bigger, talking about the potential for noise and air pollution.

“We hear trucks, we hear jake braking, we hear bulldozers, we hear escalators all during the day,” said Josh Walker.

According to county staff, the 24 acres of land off Hwy 328 in Marion County was permitted back in 2008 for agriculture use “for resource extraction” and Counts Construction Company was asking for the additional 40 acres to continue their project.

Eileen Wood is a resident that lives nearby and was opposed to the mine.

“Hundreds of trucks a day traffic dirt polluting our property, the air we breathe, the water we drink and use for daily living this will disrupt our lives.”

Some people like Clark Rollin spoke for keeping the mine.

“Infrastructure our roads depend on materials like this the safety of Marion County will better roads systems is pertinent.”

One resident said he owns the property right next to the sand mine and he supports them digging.

“I find my dealings with Counts Construction I find them to be reasonably good operators and good neighbors.”

Commissioners voted 5-0 to pass the special use permit for the sand mine but will be limited to 150 trucks a day along with other conditions. Scott Wood gave his reaction to the decision.

“It’s business and we get that, and we just need to take care of our homesteads which is our business.”

Some residents said they are concerned they’ll try to ask for more land but Counts said after five years he’ll use the property for cattle.

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