Hundreds arrive for Vulcan quarry permit hearing in Comal County


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    Residents fighting back against a rock crushing plant that they say will have an immediate impact on their lives.

    Right now, the air is clean, the roads are smooth and there’s not much noise, but the people here fear that could all change with the opening of a 1,500 acre quarry.

    Sabrina Houser is the President of Friends of Dry Comal Creek, who are protesting the quarry, and says the rock crushing plant would change their entire area.

    "We are very much concerned this is 1500 acres of pristine Texas Hill Country land that will be negatively effecting the citizens who live and work and play in that area." Houser said.

    Hundreds coming to speak at a state preliminary hearing about a potential new rock crushing plant within miles of their homes.

    "The citizens get the opportunity to announce their concerns regarding the quality of life, and health and welfare." Houser said.

    Concerns include dust, road damage, noise complaints, as well as water concerns.

    While no one from Vulcan was available for comment, they did send us this pre-recorded statement from Brett Bryant, Vice President and General Manager of their Southwest Division.

    "We're committed to the future of Comal County and to operating in a safe and responsible manner, we know this project entails being here for the long term and we're committed to being a good neighbor and doing things the right way over the long term." Bryant said.

    But their message is one the people here aren't buying.

    "Despite Vulcan's mantra that they're going to be good neighbors, we do have the scientific data that suggests their air modeling is inaccurate, Vulcan's 1604 plant since 2013-2014 has had over 80 complaints filed." Houser said.

    Vulcan did respond to those claims with the following statement:

    "Vulcan has never been cited for any air permit violations for its rock crushing or ready mix operations in Texas in during the past 20 years. Vulcan has been given a performance classification of “high” by the TCEQ for our compliance and environmental programs in Texas, including at our 1604 Quarry in San Antonio. Vulcan just completed the best MSHA/OSHA safety record in our 60-year history, a world-class performance that is far better than the industry average. Vulcan is 99 percent citation-free with state and federal environmental inspections nationally. In addition, Vulcan has been vigilant when it comes to disclosing any issues at our facilities and will continue to comply with state law when it comes to self-auditing. Comal Quarry will operate with the same high standards that have resulted in a top tier safety and environmental record for our company."

    Project protesters have 180 days to show scientific evidence and expert testimony that contradicts the air modeling provided to TCEQ before the contested case starts.

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