We received a comment from our last posting, that we thought would merit its own blog entry. It seems that more agricultural land, this time adjacent to Big Woods State Park, is going before the Rice County Commission for possible re-zoning – to allow Hollywood Pyrotechnics to use the land for fireworks testing, manufacture, and storage. I have left a message with the Rice County Administration office to verify this information and to get more details, but have not heard back. I will update information in comments once known. Agenda items have not been posted to their web site for February as of yet.

In the meantime, here is the comment we received from Chris Sullivan. As always, we welcome your comments, letters, and calls to action, as The Center for Sustainable Living is a committed, grass-roots organization, dedicated to preserving our natural environment.

I would also like to alert residents to an additional threat to ag land and our beloved Big Woods State Park.

Fireworks within the statutory limits of the Big Woods State Park? Who thinks this is a good idea?!

It is true, Hollywood Pyrotechnics is trying to push through rezoning of agricultural land next to the Big Woods State Park to allow fireworks testing, storage and manufacturing — within statutory limits of the park! Changing the zoning would allow other light industrial businesses to locate there also if the property should ever be sold. Besides, is it right to show preferential zoning for one particular business? Won’t other businesses or landowners feel entitled to the same treatment when they want an exception to the zoning ordinance for their pet project?

This pristine woods in Rice County, just outside Northfield, needs to be protected. It is currently surrounded by preservation lands and agricultural land. Help make sure that industrial companies do not jeopardize the Big Woods — keep the zoning agricultural.

Is the Big Woods State Park important? By February 12th, Rice County Commissioners need to hear from you. Let them know that our State Parks are prized.

Show up and demonstrate your support of the Big Woods State Park on February 12th.


Send letters by e-mail to: RCadmin@co.rice.mn.us asking for copies to be distributed to the Rice County Commissioners. Paper copy directly to Commissioners home never hurts. To have some of you call will help get a read on the thinking of Commissioners as we head into the 22nd. Let us know what you learn.

Board of Commissioners –

Government Services Building

320 NW 3rd Street
Faribault, MN 55021

Faribault Phone: 507-332-6101
Northfield Phone: 507-645-9576
Lonsdale Phone: 507-744-5185

Jake Gillen, Commissioner
24062 Cabot Avenue
Faribault, MN 55021
(507) 334-5746 (Home)
(507) 332-6101 (Office)

Galen Malecha, Commissioner
1607 Pheasantwood Trail
Northfield, MN 55057
(507) 645-6041 (Home)
(507) 332-6101 (Office)

Milt Plaisance, Commissioner
24330 Bagley Avenue
Faribault, MN 55021
(507) 334-7612 (Home)
(507) 332-6101 (Office)

Steve Bauer, Commissioner
6386 Farwell Path
Faribault, MN 55021
(507) 334-9700 (Home)
(507) 332-6101 (Office)

Jim Brown, Commissioner
6420 Halstad Avenue
Lonsdale, MN 55046
(507) 744-4500 (Home)
(507) 332-6101 (Office)

One Response to “More Agricultural Land Re-Zoning Requests”

  1. on 25 Jan 2008 at 1:47 pmSteve Dunlop

    If I’m not mistaken, Hollywood Pyrotechnics is a family run business owned by someone who lives on the western edge of the park. While I don’t support rezoning the area, readers should be aware that the request comes from someone who lives in the area and not a faceless corporation from afar.

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