Cerro Gordo County isn’t backing down on its effort to regulate big hog lots. Health Department Director Ron Osterholm explains under a proposed ordinance, any farmer who wants a variance from the county’s one-year moratorium will have to come to the county health board.The health board will then recommend to supervisors whether they should approve the farmer’s application. Osterholm says setting up a variance procedure bolsters the county’s authority over animal confinement operations. It has to move through all the guidelines to be approved, so even if they meet ten out of thirteen parameters, they won’t get a variance. Hearings on the ordinance are set for two weeks from today, and again on May 14th. The Cerro Gordo County Board of Supervisors passed its feedlot moratorium back when Sparboe Farms appeared likely to build a big egg-laying facility near Clear Lake.
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