Commissioners send letter to DNR in regard to possible hog farm operation
County commissioners announced they have sent a letter to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources in regard to a possible hog farm operation in northeastern Saline County.
Northern Commissioner Richard Clemens made the announcement during the commission’s regular meeting Thursday, June 15. The letter, signed by all three commissioners, lists concerns made by neighboring landowners about a possible hog farm operation, to be constructed and operated by Kruger Farms LLC.
Concerns included not receiving adequate neighbor notices; road and bridge concerns; a decrease in property and home values; possible contamination of groundwater, streams and lakes; generation of odor and air pollution; and health concerns. Those with concerns asked the commission to consider passing an ordinance placing restrictions on animal feeding operations in the county.
“We are not interested in going into an ordinance,” Clemens noted.
In addition to concerns, the letter states that Kruger Farms representatives have indicated intentions to follow and abide by laws and regulations in effect in Missouri.
“While the commission recognizes the importance of the concerns raised by landowners, ... the commission also notes the importance of pork production to the local economy,” the letter states.
In a previous meeting, commissioners said they would send the letter, along with a letter from the health department, to the DNR, and allow them to make the decision.
Those who were present during meetings with commissioners in regard to the hog farm were sent copies of the commission’s letter. The new farm would be located south of Gilliam and east of Orearville.
Presiding Commissioner Kile Guthrey then announced that the Camp Creek bridge has been removed, and crews will begin working on the approach to the new bridge starting next week. Clemens noted that a local farmer purchased the old bridge.
Guthrey then discussed a recent Transportation Advisory Committee meeting, where members discussed the four traffic lights along U.S. Highway 65 and how the left turn lane signals have different instructions. The TAC group would like to see all of the lights to have the same instructions to lessen confusion. Improvements to marking pedestrian crosswalks at three locations near Missouri Valley College was also suggested.
Clemens said he would like the two bridges on U.S. Highway 41 going toward Arrow Rock to be replaced, and the group discussed the potential for U.S. Highway 65 becoming four lanes throughout Missouri.
“Another thing we’ve been talking about is trying to get water out to the junction,” Guthrey added.
Commissioners are working on scheduling a meeting with Saline County Water District No. 3 to review options. The commission’s engineer, Rich Rhodes of Rhodes Engineering, is working to see if a study has been done to figure out how much the project would cost.
“The big thing is that we are going to push as hard as we can to get it done,” Clemens said of the project. “We think it’s too important.”
Also during the meeting, commissioners approved two liquor licenses for Quick Stop, in Slater.