Central Illinois mine owners seek zoning change for waste disposal

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ELKHART - The owners of a coal mine in central Illinois are asking zoning officials to consider a change that would allow for the expansion of a coal-waste storage facility.

The proposal from Viper Mine will go before Logan County zoning officials Thursday, and the meeting is expected to draw a crowd.

According to Elkhart Village President Lyle Fout, village officials want information on how the expansion of the storage facility would affect the local water supply.  However, Viper Mine's operators released a statement Monday, telling residents the facility was being "carefully engineered to operate safely, and to ensure protection of the environment."

Viper Mine's owners say that the company needs more waste storage capacity, and that 300 local jobs could be at stake.  The company supplies Springfield's City Water, Light and Power electric utility with coal.
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