ISHPEMING — The debate about County Road 595 continues to dominate the conversation and agendas at local government meetings.
The Ishpeming City Council debated this topic at its meeting Wednesday, but the council was split on how to move forward. Some are worried about the heavy trucks creating pavement damage that would be dangerous to small cars and motorcycles.
Others felt this was a good alternative to having those heavy trucks on US–41.
“I would just like to go on record and say that I fully support the Marquette County Road Commission’s decision to appeal the EPA’s objections to building County Road 595. I wish it didn’t have to come down to a lawsuit. The EPA should just step up and reopen this issue,” said Councilwoman Claudia Demarest.
The Marquette County Road Commission decided to sue the EPA last month over the proposed mine road that would connect the Eagle Mine with its ore processing facility at the Humboldt Mill.
The Commission was seeking a wetland fill permit from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality in order to build the proposed County Road 595, but it was denied by the Michigan Department of Equality.
The Road Commission claims this would make nearby roads, like the current route on County Road 550, safer, and even reduce air pollution. If built, County Road 595 would span almost 22 miles through Champion, Ely, Humboldt and Michigamme Townships, connecting US-41 to County Road Triple A.
In its permit application, mine officials said the construction will affect would affect nearly 26 acres of wetlands and require 22 stream crossings.
Other topics discussed at Thursday’s meeting were contracts for fire hose testing, a new truck for Public Works, and applying for a gaming license for a casino night fundraiser.
- The Council approved a contract with FireCatt LLC for fire hose testing. The contract is not to exceed $2300 and the training will take place this summer.
- The council also approved the purchase of a new truck for the Department of Public Works.
- In addition, the council also discussed applying for a charitable gaming license for a casino night fundraiser in May and season long raffle this summer. They’ll need to pass a resolution in order to get the license.