Wisconsin high court upholds town's mining ordinance

Published On: Feb 08 2012 02:14:29 PM CST   Updated On: Feb 08 2012 03:00:00 PM CST

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Supreme Court says a Chippewa County town was within its rights when it approved an ordinance regulating the mining of non-metals.

The high court issued its ruling Wednesday. At issue was a 2008 ordinance by the Town of Cooks Valley that imposed a number of requirements for companies seeking to open a gravel pit or sand mine. The requirements included obtaining a permit and allowing public hearings first.

Four landowners challenged the ordinance. They said it wasn't valid because it was essentially a zoning ordinance, meaning it should have been approved by the county board.

A county judge agreed and invalidated the ordinance. An appeals court sent the case to the state Supreme Court, which concluded that the ordinance differed substantially enough from a zoning ordinance.