PROVO -- The businesses that supply gravel for road base and concrete for new homes say they won't be able to do that if Utah County approves its new restrictive ordinance.

Gravel pit owners and companies involved in mining, crushing and transporting sand and gravel told the Utah County Planning Commission Wednesday the proposed ordinance is "Draconian.""Honestly, it feels like there's an intent to eliminate this industry from this county," said Craig Carlisle, an attorney representing Valley Asphalt Inc. "Every issue of concern can be addressed and resolved on a case-by-case basis under the existing special exception. This is duplication."

Not only is the proposed gravel ordinance duplication, he said, but it will require pit owners to draw up and file expensive contour maps every two years and rebuild roads that should be paid for out of the fuel taxes paid by the trucks the companies run. Also, it will essentially turn pit owners into developers who are expected to foresee the future.

Those at the commission's work session who favor the more restrictive ordinance said the health and well-being of their children is at stake with pits bringing in pollution, traffic and hazards that threaten more than just the quality of life.

Buck Rose, assistant director of community development for the county, listed more than a page of grievances and complaints that have been lodged against gravel pit operations.

Rose said the proposed ordinance represents compromise between those whose livelihood depends on excavation and those who feel their neighborhoods are at risk because the current regulations are not sufficiently controlling the problems.

Jamie Evans, owner of Evans Grading and Paving, said he has not figured out what is wrong with the existing regulations.

Rose said he isn't sure anything is wrong, but the commission asked for a new ordinance.

"Tell us, where do you want us to go? Where do you want to get the resources for roads and dikes for flooding?" asked Evans, who reminded the audience that filled the County Commission chambers that if sand and gravel have to be trucked into the county, prices will rise on homes and roads.

Sterling Stoddard, representing Staker Paving and Construction, suggested the commission appoint a task force to develop a more balanced ordinance with input from the industry that's going to be burdened with restrictions.

Resident Steve Penrod, who lives within 100 yards of a Valley Asphalt plant, said the county should "at least ask these guys to play by the rules and enforce the regulations that exist."

Mike Long, representing Highland residents who oppose new gravel pits in the city, said he applauds what he calls a belated interest in cooperation.

The Planning Commission will review a draft of the ordinance at its regular session in two weeks.