L-R: Congressman Charlie Gonzalez, Mark Harrison, Tom Powell, Chris Hopkins.

By Christopher Hopkins, The Saint Consulting Group

Industry professionals at the 2013 Aggregates Academy & Expo in San Antonio got a 360-degree perspective of techniques to overcome community opposition to a new aggregate quarry or asphalt plant proposal.

I had the opportunity to help lead an AGG1 Academy panel discussion that examined the difficulties in permitting quarry and asphalt facilities from the perspectives of a producer, an attorney, an elected official and a land use political consultant (that would be me).

My panel also included:

The Honorable Charles A. Gonzalez, who represented the Texas 20th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives for seven terms before retiring in 2013 (and before that served as an elected judge in county and district courts).

Thomas Powell, Vice President of Aggregate Resources for the Western United States for CEMEX Corporation.

Mark D. Harrison, partner in the law firm Harrison, Temblador, Hungerford & Johnson of Sacramento, California, who specializes permitting mineral mines and aggregate quarries on the local, state and federal levels.

AGG1 Aggregates Academy & Expo is the industry’s leading exposition and education event. The 2013 expo took place in the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center from March 19-21, with more than 380 companies showcasing their newest innovations. The Agg1 Academy is an annual collaborative effort between the National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association and the National Asphalt Pavement Association.

Our session — “Effectively Countering Community Opposition To Your Project” — was well attended and sparked a productive give and take between the panelists and audience. We discussed many of the specific problems and hurdles that can arise during the permitting process.

If you were not able to attend the expo and would like information about the ideas we exchanged and the issues addressed, send me an email or give me a call. My contact information is below.

Christopher Hopkins is senior vice president for mining and aggregates for The Saint Consulting Group, email hopkins@tscg.biz or call 615.656.3794.

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