Mining Firm Buries Opposition in Azusa, Calif.

"They spent their nights and weekends knocking on doors, shaking hands, providing yard signs and selling T-shirts. Somewhere in their city of 47,000, they believed, were others as outraged by the city's deal to let a mining company dig into the hillside that stood sentry above their San Gabriel Valley neighborhoods.

But when Azusa residents went to the polls to decide the fate of the mining operation, the grass-roots opposition was buried.

"We were outmanned, outspent and outgunned," Jeri Vogel of Azusans Against Mining Expansion said last week after more than two-thirds of the voters in the special election agreed to let Vulcan Materials Co. carve up the foothill of Van Tassel Ridge."

Corina Knoll reports for the Los Angeles Times January 31, 2011.

Monday, January 31, 2011