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St. Helens bluff dispute to come before Oregon Court of Appeals

Developer appealing LUBA decision from January

A development company seeking to raze a basalt outcropping in north St. Helens has appealed an Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals decision from this January upholding the St. Helens Planning Commission's denial of a vital permit.

The case, S. St. Helens, LLC v. City of St. Helens, is scheduled to be heard by an Oregon Court of Appeals panel on Tuesday, April 14.

Planning commissioners voted unanimously last summer to deny a sensitive lands permit for the project, which would excavate some 500,000 cubic yards of rock from a bluff in between North 10th, 11th and 12th streets to make way for residential development. They said the proposal conflicts with city code restricting surface mining and quarrying outside heavy industrial areas, although Andrew Stamp, the developer's attorney, has argued the mining ordinance does not apply.

Stamp was not immediately available for comment Wednesday, March 4.

Jenny Dimsho, an assistant city planner in St. Helens, was dismissive of the appeal, noting that LUBA sided with the city on virtually all points in its decision earlier this year.

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