The Mat-Su Borough Assembly has given its stamp of approval to a controversial coal mine outside of Sutton.
The proposed Wishbone Hill Mine would be developed by the Usibelli Coal Company, which promised jobs to local residents if the project goes through.
Tuesday's Assembly meeting drew both supporters and opponents of the project: some expressed concerns about health risks associated with blowing coal dust, while others said it would be an important economic development for the region.
"I feel like we have sat by and just let this go on for years, and only the nay sayers have gotten the air time," said Borough Mayor Larry DeVilbiss, a long-time supporter of the proposed mine.
Ultimately, though, the decision on whether to issue permits for the project rests with the Department of Natural Resources, and public comments on the issue are due next month.