UPDATE: Center Point trying to stop hog confinement in town
Written by Michelle Corless, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
CENTER POINT (KWWL) -
People in Center Point are concerned a hog confinement will be built on a farm near their town and they have now gotten the backing of the Linn County Board of Supervisors.
People in Center Point worry that having so many pigs in a small space will create a bad smell, lowering their property values, and hurting their children's health.
"Within two miles of our home we have a 50% chance of cancer," said Regina Behmlander, a concerned neighbor. "I can't take that chance with my kids."
The land belongs to Matt Ditch.
He's a third generation farmer who wants the confinement to grow his farm.
"This new facility will allow me to get back on the family farm, to continue the legacy of dedication started by my grandfather," said Matt Ditch, Applicant. "It will allow our family farm to grow and become stable and competitive in the current agricultural landscape."
One step towards getting the building is getting a recommendation from the Linn County Board of Supervisors to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
But on Monday morning Ditch's critics were putting up a fight to keep the board from making that recommendation.
"We, the people of the community, we would be devastated if with a few signatures if you sign this request that will allow this factory farm to be in our backyard," said Ron Gibson, Concerned Neighbor.
Ditch and a few others believe the confinement would be in the town's best interest.
"I want to see this community continue to flourish and grow," said Ditch. "I would not do anything to hurt it, the environment that we live in, and that my children will grow up in."
The ultimate decision about the facility will be up to the Iowa DNR.
The Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 on Wednesday to not support the permit application for the facility.
The final decision will be left up to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
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