MANATEE COUNTY – At what is expected to be a contentious public hearing Thursday, the Manatee County Commission will consider Mosaic Fertilizer’s request to expand one of its phosphate mines.
Commissioners have already received hundreds of pages of correspondence from supporters and opponents of the Wingate East mine proposal, as well as numerous phone messages. (Read some of the public’s comments here.)
Because they want to attend a meeting at which the Palmetto City Commission is to approve its commitments for a proposed hotel adjoining the Bradenton Area Convention Center, the commissioners intend to pause the proceedings at 5 p.m. If the hearing has not been concluded and they have not rendered a decision, the commissioners will resume the hearing at 10 a.m. Monday.
Mosaic Fertilizer, which also owns the Four Corners Mine spanning Manatee, Hillsborough, Hardee and Polk counties, and the Wingate Creek Mine in Manatee wants to rezone 3,595 acres known as its Wingate East property from agriculture to extraction, which will allow the mining of phosphate ore.
Phosphate is an ingredient in fertilizer products. The site flanking Duette Road is east of Mosaic’s Wingate Creek mine, north of the 202-lot Winding Creek subdivision, south of Duette Preserve and west of Hardee County land owned by Mosaic.
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