The Colorado Department of Health and Environment is finalizing the draft air permit for Western Excelsior Corp., and confirmed that a public comment period will be made available.
The Air Pollution Emission Notice (APEN) identifies point sources of emissions and their thresholds.
The advocacy group Concerned Citizens of Riverside has been urging the town board and the state agency to open the draft permit up for public comment.
The state health department doesn't typically extend a public comment period for a draft permit, but cited the community interest, including that of Concerned Citizens, as a motivator.
"The Air Pollution Control Division is actively working on the draft permit for Western Excelsior. The expectation is that it will be completed sometime this month or next," said Christopher Dann, communications liaison for the state health department. "Although not required by regulation, the division anticipates using its discretionary authority to offer a formal public comment opportunity on the draft permit that will commence once it is completed. This is based upon community interest from the CROR and others."
Concerned Citizens president Chip Tuthill is now urging the town to send a letting to the agency, thanking them for listening to their request.
"They don't normally do a public comment period, but I'm happy to recognize the efforts of CROR and the town supporting it in a letter," said Phillips.
She noted that per the health department's format, the public comments have to be submitted in writing, either through email or mail) and sent directly to the state's Air Pollution Control Division.
The public comment period, when established, will be open for 30 days, and advertised in the legal notices section of the Mancos Times and on the town's website.