By ANNE KUNKEL
Freshwater trout sparked a road salting debate for the City Council members and public during Monday's meeting, with the decision to keep plans the same for now and to keep looking for a future solution.
Linda Sellner, a Duluth citizen and a researcher, took the stand to address her concerns for this coming winter. "Are there any trout in these rivers anymore? My research says no," said Sellner.
Sellner was addressing the issue of salting Duluth city roads this winter, and the effects it has on the city's streams and rivers. According to her research, water runoff from the salted roads during winter is running into the freshwater rivers in Duluth, making it an inhabitable place for trout."70 percent of salt applied to the street goes into the environment," Sellner said.
Sellner said that the city should not use salt on the roads when it is above 15 degrees, and there are other effective methods to de-icing roads, such as using brine water.
Other council members agreed with her. Council member Jim Stauber addressed the other members asking if anyone was looking into this issue. "The short answer is yes, we are," said David Montgomery, chief administrative officer.
For now the plan is being looked into, and road plans will stay the same until council members can come to a solution or an adequate replacement for salt.