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Council launches investigation into Red Wing mayor's lobbying job

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The Red Wing City Council voted unanimously Monday night to hire an outside investigator to look into the mayor's business dealings since he was hired to run a lobbying group for the silica sand industry, MPR reports.

Mayor Dennis Egan publicly acknowledged his new job as the executive director of the Minnesota Industrial Sand Council and has maintained there's no conflict of interest, but city council members disagree.

Frac sand facilities have popped up in several areas of southeastern Minnesota and has become a contentious issue in Red Wing.

Although there are currently no pending proposals for frac sand facilities in Red Wing, the city has been dealing with truck traffic issues and barge loading of frac sand from city-owned dock.

Council members are also expected to discuss what position Red Wing should take on frac sand issues at the state level.

The Star Tribune reports two council members directly asked Egan to resign or step down from his new position. Egan refused, but said he would recuse himself from city action on sand-mining issues.

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