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Letters to the Editor kr

Notice of review

Mille Lacs Energy Cooperative (MLEC) is proposing a new headquarters near the junction of Hwys. 18 and 169, address 23329 U.S. Hwy. 169, Aitkin MN 56431. The seven-plus-acre proposal is to build a pole yard, large pole shed, warehouse/vehicle storage building, office space, and two large parking lots, not to mention the needed improvements to Hwy. 169 to accommodate the added traffic. Our concerns are for the clear-cutting and excavation of some prime hardwood forest and the costs involved in this major construction and needed highway improvements.

We learned of this project because our property adjoins the proposed property, and we received a “Notice of Review” in the mail. MLEC needs a conditional use permit for this area which is currently zoned farm/residential. The planning commission meeting is scheduled for Sept. 21 at 4 p.m. and they could approve the conditional use permit at that time.

We believe in being good stewards of the land, and this conditional use permit should not be approved. The destruction of the forest and the need to bulldoze and excavate such beautiful land seems obscene. Also, the major expense for this project as it affects the users (everyone that is a MLEC member) does not seem like a sound business decision.

It would seem to us that any MLEC headquarters should be located in an established commercial and business location and not relocated to these beautiful woodlands which are surrounded by recreational land and homes.

Robert and Sharon Navarre, Aitkin

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