Proposed sale of land in Rose Canyon worries residents

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HERRIMAN - Some people in Herriman are upset over the possible sale of a piece of land in Rose Canyon.

Kennecott wants to buy the open space from Salt Lake County, because it holds the mineral rights beneath the ground.

Herriman city held a work session Thursday night to bring all the sides together to answer questions. County mayor Peter Corroon is expected to make a recommendation on the issue next week Herriman residents are concerned about possible water and air pollution if the land is sold to Kennecott. Kennecott says residents don't have to worry because, right now, it's buying the property for exploration drilling and not to expand its current mining operations. The piece of Rose Canyon being talked about was bought by Salt Lake County a few years ago to preserve open space.

The county knew Kennecott had mining claims on the property. That means Kennecott can explore on the land if it wants to.

Salt Lake County figured selling the land would bring in money to buy other areas to preserve open space.

"It was our intention that we were preserving open space," said Ann Ober with Salt Lake County Intergovernment Relations. "And so I just want to make sure everyone knows that it would be our hope we could preserve all the acreage." The deal would include 832 acres. Kennecott says it already monitors the water... and would install an air quality monitoring station.

But not everyone is convinced.

"If they're up there drilling, I want to hear some guarantees that drilling is not going to bother the aquifer," said Herriman resident Bill Coon.

Kennecott says if it does find something during its exploration, then there is a lengthy process to actually mine it.

It couldn't guarantee the open space deal would continue, but it did promise to work with residents.


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