Callaway County group sues over hog farm vote

1 year 3 months 2 weeks ago Friday, March 31 2017 Mar 31, 2017 Friday, March 31, 2017 3:14:00 PM CDT March 31, 2017 in Coverage From Callaway
By: James Packard, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

CALLAWAY COUNTY - A Callaway County neighbor group is suing the Missouri Department of Natural Resources over a scheduled Clean Water Commission vote to approve a proposed hog farm.

The commission has already voted on an operating permit for the proposed confined animal feeding operation (CAFO) twice before. Both times the commission failed to approve an operating permit for the facility.

It's part of a legal battle almost three years in the making.

The Friends of Responsible Agriculture (FORAg) has been fighting a proposed 10,000 hog CAFO near their homes since June 2014.

They worry a CAFO in their neighborhood could pose a risk to their water supply and devalue their property.

Jeff Jones, a member of the group and farmer who lives near the proposed facility, said the commission needs four votes to either approve or disapprove an operating permit for the CAFO. So far, they haven't met that mark.

"They're in a deadlock," Jones said. "I guess they were hoping that a third vote would bring about the fourth vote to accept or deny the permit." 

FORAg's lawyer, Stephen Jeffery, said the Clean Water Commission was set to vote on the CAFO's operating permit April 5. 

Jeffery said in an email because the commission already considered and failed to pass the permit, "the commission lacks the power to reconsider the Callaway Farrowing permit on April 5, 2017 and conduct any more votes on the permit."

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources said Friday the Clean Water Commission needed to "take further action" in the case but hadn't reached a final decision on the facility.

On Tuesday, Circuit Court Judge Daniel Green ordered the commission not to consider the operating permit until the court says otherwise.

Jones said, if the operating permit were approved, "it'd be devastating. It was best explained to me that my operation in this area probably should be sold before that happens because it won't make a low sale on land in this area, it'll make a no sale."

That's why Jones and his group support a county ordinance, proposed by Western District Commissioner Roger Fischer, to regulate the construction of any new CAFOs in Callaway County.

The proposed ordinance would establish minimum distances between a new CAFO and property that unassociated citizens reside or gather. Fischer said it's aimed at mitigating the spread of viruses animals might get when they're housed in the CAFO.

"The greater the distance between the humans and the animals that are in confinement," Fischer said, "It does reduce the likelihood that a human would contract a disease or virus from the CAFO."

Fischer said his proposed ordinance is not targeted at CAFOs, but is aimed at improving public health.

Nonetheless, it would impact the way CAFO operations grow in Callaway County, including the one Jones and his group oppose.

"They've already had two opportunities to pass this thing, so we want to hold them accountable that it has not passed and that we should stop voting on it," Jones said.

A hearing for the new lawsuit is set for April 24 at 1:30 p.m.

[Editor's note: This story has been updated to invlude the response from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.]

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
STURGEON - The oldest county fair west of the Mississippi kicks off Tuesday in Sturgeon. The Boone County fair... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 2:49:00 PM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
BOONE COUNTY – Expecting mothers in Boone County will soon have more services at their disposal. The county received... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 2:16:00 PM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Grain Belt Express Clean Line, a proposed energy transmission project through northern Missouri, got new life... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 1:59:00 PM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
ASHLAND - A child identification program wants to help parents be as prepared as possible in the event that a... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 1:41:00 PM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Nineteen agencies received more than $115,000 in grant money Tuesday from the United Way of Central Missouri.... More >>
4 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 11:56:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Some people may notice their trash laying out on the curb for longer than usual on Tuesday. ... More >>
5 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 11:12:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
COLE COUNTY - A car chase which started in Cole County on Tuesday ended in Columbia with two arrests. ... More >>
5 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 10:22:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The group fighting a ballot measure that would make Missouri a right-to-work state has outraised its... More >>
5 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 10:17:30 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Authorities say two planes carrying more than 250 passengers made emergency landings at Kansas City International... More >>
6 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 10:11:34 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Police records related to the shooting death of Rovon Blocker suggest the incident appeared to be accidental. ... More >>
6 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 9:39:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - Three Fulton men are in custody after being charged with stealing and drug offenses, in connection to... More >>
7 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 9:01:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
FULTON - A judge sentenced a man convicted of a dozen sex crimes, some involving children, to sixty years in... More >>
8 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 8:05:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) - The United States is open to holding direct talks with the Taliban to encourage negotiations between the... More >>
11 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 4:30:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) - A 29-year-old gun-rights activist served as a covert Russian agent while living in Washington, gathering intelligence on... More >>
11 hours ago Tuesday, July 17 2018 Jul 17, 2018 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 4:14:00 AM CDT July 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – City council approved two public hearings in August to discuss possible increases to the property tax and sewer... More >>
20 hours ago Monday, July 16 2018 Jul 16, 2018 Monday, July 16, 2018 7:46:00 PM CDT July 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Former Gov. Eric Greitens' campaign spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on legal fees in his... More >>
21 hours ago Monday, July 16 2018 Jul 16, 2018 Monday, July 16, 2018 7:03:27 PM CDT July 16, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill to rename the Columbia post office located on Walnut... More >>
21 hours ago Monday, July 16 2018 Jul 16, 2018 Monday, July 16, 2018 6:51:00 PM CDT July 16, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - Family, friends and law enforcement continue to search Little Dixie Lake Conservation Area for Jerry Kinman. ... More >>
22 hours ago Monday, July 16 2018 Jul 16, 2018 Monday, July 16, 2018 6:00:00 PM CDT July 16, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 87°
4pm 91°
5pm 88°
6pm 86°
7pm 85°