WHEREAS, on March 15, 2000, the city council approved Resolution 00-0206, granting a use permit, in accordance with Section 50-107(k) of the Duluth City Code, to the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District to conduct a pilot project for a food waste compost project at the Courtland Street yard waste compost facility, and that pilot project has proved successful; and

        WHEREAS, the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District has submitted to the city council a request for a use permit in accordance with Section 50-107(k) of the Duluth City Code to permanently operate an organic composting facility on property described as Block "K," Auditors Plat No. 4 and located at 2600 Courtland Street; and said permit application was duly referred to the city planning commission for a study, report and public hearing, and the city planning commission has subsequently reported its unanimous approval to the city council; and

        WHEREAS, the approval was made because of the city planning commission's findings that appropriate safeguards will exist to protect the comprehensive plan and to conserve and to protect property values in the neighborhood if conditions are observed.

        NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that a use permit is hereby granted to Western Lake Superior Sanitary District to operate an organic composting facility at the compost yard waste facility at 2600 Courtland Street subject to the following condition:

                That the facility be limited to, operated and maintained in accordance with the project description and plans submitted by Western Lake Superior Sanitary District, entitled, "Western Lake Superior Sanitary District's Organic Composting Facility," as identified as Public Document No. ____________.

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:  This resolution grants a use permit to Western Lake Superior Sanitary District to conduct an organic composting facility operation at the yard waste facility at 2600 Courtland Street.

A pilot project for this operation was conducted, under council Resolution 00-0206, to collect data and gain experience on composting organic material from within the district. The pilot project has been successfully conducted since April 2000. The district continues to research methods to recover additional organic material, in addition to yard waste, from the waste stream. This facility will be able to recover over 8,000 tons of additional organic waste that can be composted for beneficial reuse. It has been determined that about 14 percent of the waste stream is food related material. This material would otherwise be land fill.

The district is working with the Minnesota pollution control agency, the Minnesota office of environmental assistance and Duluth city planning to assure that all regulations and concerns are addressed. The pilot project included selected, separated organic material including edible and inedible food waste, greenhouse waste, food processing waste, waste grain and incidental organic material. This material, after grinding and drying, has been mixed with yard waste at the existing compost yard. The following parameters were and will continue to be monitored: techniques, operation, site development, climatic impacts, analysis of finished compost and public awareness.

The project description and plans submitted by Western Lake Superior Sanitary District, entitled, "Organic Composting Facility," are attached to the resolution.

The planning commission unanimously approved this resolution at its December 12, 2000, meeting.

The section of the Code which applies to this request is inserted below. The portions in Bold were cited by staff as the basis for the review process.

Sec. 50-107. Permitted uses.

        A building or premises in the M-2 manufacturing district shall be used only for the following purposes:

... (b)    Any other use, other than those enumerated in paragraph (k) of this Section and other than solid waste disposal sites and yard waste compost facility sites not in conflict with any state Statute or provision of this Code regulating nuisances, including the manufacture, compounding, processing, packaging or treatment of the following or similar products together with any similar new or improved uses, as determined by the board of zoning appeals, which are not likely to create any more offensive noise, vibration, dust, heat, smoke, odor, glare or other objectionable influences than the minimum amount normally resulting from other uses permitted;

... (k)    Uses approved by city council. Any of the following uses, when the location of such use has been approved by the city council after public hearing and investigation and report by the city planning commission:

          (1)    Acid manufacture; acid bulk storage;
          (2)    Cement, lime, gypsum or plaster of Paris manufacture;
          (3)    Central concrete mixing or concrete proportioning plant;
          (4)    Distillation, manufacture or refining of bones, coal or tar asphalt;
          (5)    Explosives, manufacture or storage;
          (6)    Fat, grease, lard or tallow rendering or refining;
          (7)    Fertilizer manufacture (from organic matter);
          (8)    Glue or size manufacture;
          (9)    Paper manufacture;
        (10)    Petroleum or asphalt refining or storage;
        (11)    Smelting of tin, copper, zinc or iron ores;
        (12)    Storage or processing raw hides or fur;
        (13)    Stockyards or slaughter of animals (except poultry).

        In permitting any such uses, the city council may impose appropriate conditions and safeguards, including performance bonds, to protect the health, safety and welfare of the residents of the community and the environment. The site plan, landscape plans and building drawings for the use as approved, and other commitments and contractual agreements, shall be recorded as city council public documents prior to the issuance of any building permit. All future use of the land and structures erected thereon shall be thereafter governed by and limited to the approved plans. Any subsequent change or addition to the plan or use shall be submitted for approval as herein provided. Without limitation on other valid reasons for denying approval for such a use, the city council may deny approval for such a use if it should find that such a use would have negative environmental, health or safety impacts on the community or have little or no contiguity with existing or programmed development in the affected area. (Ord. No. 7158, 6-9-58, § 16.2; Ord. No. 7274, § 1; Ord. No. 9061, 12-19-91, § 1; Ord. No. 9239, 3-6-95, § 4.)