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Supervisors discuss possible good neighbor policy

By Staff | May 9, 2014

Proposed hog confinement owners/operators and their neighbors might be having coffee together a little more often if Emmet County adopts a proposed good neighbor policy for animal confinements.

Supervisor Tim Schumacher at Tuesdays board of supervisors meeting said he had talked with Palo Alto County board chair Ed Noonan about that county’s good neighbor policy for siting livestock confinements. While Noonan admitted to Schumacher that the policy has “no teeth”, the policy helps producers and neighbors come to an agreement – thus avoiding thorny situations when residents believe they’re being infringed upon by confinements.

“I’m certainly interested to be a part of that,” said Schumacher.

While one local Palo Alto farmer had opted to not take part in the process, said Schumacher, “People are generally on board with it.”

Supervisor Bev Juhl said she would like to read Palo Alto County’s Good Neighbor Policy to get the details.

Animal confinements of 1,000 or more animal units fall under the Iowa Department of Natural Resources livestock matrix process in which one cow or 2.5 hogs comprise one animal unit. All livestock operators, including those falling below the matrix levels, must complete a manure management plan.