Dear Editor,

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection Board is seeking input from all stakeholders regarding proposed revisions to ATCP 51, Livestock Siting Standards. Public comments will be accepted until 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 13.

Based on lessons learned, current agricultural challenges, and available research, it’s time to update Livestock Siting Standards.

If an odor scoring system will continue to be used, should it be overhauled? The Livestock Siting Application currently contains 5 worksheets applicants seeking a conditional use permit must complete. The odor scoring system on Worksheet 2 is based on information 13-15 years old, and not reflective of current science and farming practices.

Is a sixth worksheet in order? Attorney Joe Ruth and Mike Koles with the Wisconsin Towns Association testified Aug. 15 about wear and tear on roads from hauling manure. They recommend adding a sixth worksheet, addressing roads and infrastructure.

Should Odor Management Plans be required, not optional, for all livestock facilities over 1,000 animal units?

Is it a good idea to remove odor control credits altogether, since the system lacks oversight to ensure reliable results?

For example, composting as a manure storage odor practice may or may not be effective, depending on how it is executed.

What can be done to make Livestock Siting Standards more protective of stakeholders? State Statute 93.90 says proposed Livestock Siting Standards should consider whether they are protective of public health or safety.

Both are equally important, with increasingly-resistant emerging zoonotic diseases as well as potential fire risks posed by combustible industrial equipment.

In order to “balance the economic viability of farm operations with protecting natural resources and other common interests” (State Statute 93.90), would it be better to change the “adjacent neighbor notification” parameter to include all residents (homeowners and renters), business owners and landowners within 2 miles? Also, to change the eligibility-to-appeal (a Livestock Siting decision) distance to 3 miles?

Listen to Kara O’Connor with Wisconsin Farmers Union at the Aug. 22 DATCP hearing—https://bit.ly/2maZtjL

See Lake Mills Town Board Chair, Hope Oostdik’s testimony—https://bit.ly/2m4fKGR

For more information, see https://bit.ly/2lIXNxs

See what others are saying: https://bit.ly/2kEOpuu

(Criste Greening) and https://bit.ly/2kpV77P (Kara O’Connor)

Please send your comments to livestocksitingcomments@wisconsin.gov by Sept. 13.

Anita J. Martin

Lake Mills

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