SILVER CITY, Nev. (KRNV & MyNews4.com) -- Comstock Mining is facing substantial pushback in its efforts to change an area city's master plan and zoning to allow for mineral exploration. The Lyon County Commission meets Thursday morning, and they are expecting a full house.
Comstock's Preisdent and CEO Corrado de Gasperis said that his company just wants to have the right supportive zoning. "If you look at the land, the topography of the land, the proximity to the county services, the proximity to the county infrastructure, I don't think anyone would zone it Dense Suburban Residential."
Comstock is requesting the master plan and zoning change to allow for mineral exploration in the town. Without this exploration and analysis, the company can't determine what type of mining will be done in Silver City.
"Why wouldn't you allow us to assess the possibility, and then we would know. I think there is a distrust that comes from the legacy, but I think it's extreme," de Gasperis said.
He argues that whatever comes next would be collaborative and beneficial to the town, bringing as many as 300 jobs. But the company's request is facing stiff opposition.
Joe McCarthy says that it is a cyclical industry. "It has a history of boom and bust, and the long-term sustainability of Lyon County is based on maintaining communities. This is the wrong project in the wrong location."
Critics like McCarthy say changing the master plan and zoning would introduce uses that significantly impact their quality of life. "Not only the quality of life, but the residential property values, and the potential for Silver City to continue to grow as a prosperous community."
de Gasperis argues back that his company would increase property values, because the technology now allows for reclamation of mined areas. His company would also provide the means and money for historic preservation of the Comstock area.
He has a tough sell, as the Staff and Planning Commission have denied the company's request. One thing is for certain, the meeting is expected to be packed and the conversation lively.