The Fresno County Planning Commission will be making a decision that will affect county residents as well as visitors from all over the world. The decision is whether to grant a conditional use permit to CEMEX, a foreign owned company, to allow them to mine aggregate on Jesse Morrow Mountain and to build asphalt and cement plants at its base.
The mountain is 15 miles east of Fresno on the north side of Highway 180, an area designated as a scenic highway. It, and Mount Campbell across the highway, are gateway mountains to the national parks and familiar landmarks to Valley residents. It is also a mountain sacred to the local Choinumni Tribe.
Three CEMEX officials assured me that this project will not be visible. This is not true. Additionally, the lights will be visible for miles. These officials also assured me that the permit is a "done deal" and that operations will begin in 2007. The permit has not been issued nor approved by the Board of Supervisors. It is my hope that both entities will listen to their constituents, who oppose this project, and reject the CEMEX proposal.