JASPER — No archaeological sites will be disturbed during mining, according to a Nutrien spokesperson.
Following concerns aired at the Hamilton County Board of County Commissioners meeting Oct. 1, Nutrien further reviewed the mining plans for the area and Mike Williams, government and industry affairs manager for the company, said the future plans for mining on the property that is relative to the archaeological sites, excludes the area directly in relation to the Indian mound that possibly contains human remains.
Cliff Adams, the county attorney, raised concerns with Nutrien’s plans for future mining near the site, which is protected by Florida statutes.
Adams told the board that the county had been made aware of the Indian mound and other sites in the area by the Department of State. Total, he said there are three archaeological sites located on the property that Nutrien was looking to mine.
Williams said the company was researching the matter and going through the proper steps to ensure that any archaeological sites remain unharmed.
“We have been mining here for 50 something years, we’ve never knowingly mined up a graveyard,” Williams said. “We pay the normal respects.
“We are doing some research into it, and once we validate that research, we will take the appropriate course of action.”
Further review into the plans indicated that the area near the sites were not included, Williams said, adding there are no plans for mining on the property for a couple of years.
According to specialist Robert Quall in the the archeological sites master file for the state from 1977, “all indications point to the fact that this site was a burial mound and it is here again that excavation is needed to prove this conclusively.”
Also during the meeting, the board discussed the county’s new code enforcement officer position, including the possibility of the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office taking on the task of providing a person for that position.
From discussion, the board prefers someone already employed by the county to fill that position and will discuss it again at the next meeting.
The board also recognized the Tyre family as the county’s Farm Family of the Year. Greg Hicks, the county’s extension director, told the board the county has chosen a farm family to honor annually since 1977.
Rodney and Loretta Tyre were present to receive the recognition from the board for “their contributions to the citizens of Hamilton County and the agriculture community."