The Board of Directors of the Hickory Underground Water District met last Thursday night to consider the request by Proppant Specialists for permits for seven wells at their Katemcy property for a sand mine.A formal hearing preceded the regular meeting. During that hearing, witnesses presented evidence both for and against the permit request. About 25-35 visitors were in attendance for the hearing, and the regular meeting that followed.The evidence presented pertained to the structure of the aquifer in the proposed mining area, to the pumping rates of wells proposed, and to the hydrology of the site. Witnesses were cross examined and the Board given the opportunity to ask any questions they wished.Proppant Specialists argued that the 400 acre feet per year it was requesting was less than half the amount currently allocated for agricultural uses of the land. The company also indicated it would not be mining below the water table, and that it would use materials and procedures that meet current regulations. Hickory Underground Director, David Huie, recommended approval of the well permits with a change from agricultural to industrial at the 400 acre feet level, but added a set of conditions on those permits.- Each of the seven wells will be individually metered.- Test wells, monitored by Hickory for quality and water level, must be drilled by the applicant.- No mining will be allowed in the water tabel.- Water shall not be removed from the pit area except for storm water removal.The exact language of the permit conditions was not available at press time; but, will be made available by next week.