Ventura County supervisors on Tuesday will consider approving an operating permit for the proposed Sycamore Ranch Mine, a gravel strip-mining project 1 1/2 miles west of Fillmore.
Southern Pacific Milling wants to mine a 129-acre site in the midst of orange and lemon groves. The mining would occur over 29 years and be conducted in two-acre blocks that would be reclaimed as a citrus orchard once the gravel was removed.
The city of Fillmore appealed the county Planning Commission's decision in July to certify the project's environmental impact report. The city along with neighboring ranchers and farmers contend that the report does not adequately address the project's potential traffic and air-quality impacts on the agriculturally rich area.
They also contend that the gravel mine will irreparably harm the area's rural character and damage the economic base of Fillmore and surrounding communities.