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Mine explosives bill worries county officials

Hernando officials are balking at a last-minute measure passed by the Legislature that would strip county officials of regulatory power over the use of explosives in commercial lime rock mines and transfer it to state officials.

State Sen. Ginny Brown-Waite, R-Brooksville, is reviewing the bill before deciding whether to ask Gov. Jeb Bush to veto it.

Hernando County officials said the measure will harm residents.

"Assuming the governor signs this, when mines exceed the blasting limits, who are the citizens going to complain to? Some state office in Tallahassee?" County Commission Chairman Paul Sullivan said.

The last-minute amendment was apparently aimed at blocking rules Miami-Dade County officials have been considering in response to complaints from homeowners who have been adversely affected by blasting in rock quarries near Miami Lakes and other neighborhoods. Story, Section A.