JFAN'S Public Comments at the August 28, 2018 RWP LLC Public Hearing
President and Executive Director
Yesterday at the Master Matrix scoring session, JFAN presented you with four questions that we felt didn’t deserve the 80 points taken and recommend you fail RWP with 425 points. We ask you to not grant points for a truck turnaround because the design plans didn’t include an engineering drawing that proved it would meet the required dimensions. We asked you to not grant points for the confinement pit question because it didn’t have an adequate maintenance plan.
We urged you not grant points for the CAFO being under 2000 animal units because there was no contract provided that proved RWP would actually s
its claimed 1999.2 animal units. I explained that former DNR employee Gene Tinker personally told me that the DNR knows many CAFOs have one or two hundred more hogs than stated on their application but were not allowed to find out the true count. Mr. Greiner offered to privately share that contract with you, but this should be public information.
We also asked you to deny points for maintaining a separation distance from wells when manure was applied on a field because our research showed two fields might have old, unplugged wells and there was no documentation to prove otherwise. We explained that applying manure to an unplugged well posed a great risk to polluting groundwater.
I appreciate that you listened. Now I want to make a strong appeal to you.
The state grants you the discretion and authority to score a Master Matrix as you see fit. You can hold a CAFO to either very high standards or to marginal ones. The DNR will make its own determination, and JFAN can address that. But right now, you have the power to use high standards that could protect the health and well being of your constituents, because that is your primary duty as supervisor, to protect Jefferson County residents.
As you decide what level of standards you feel are high enough, I want you to think about the impacts of CAFOs on the health, quality of life, property values, and the environment that are well documented in over 50 years of respected studies.
I want you to think about whom you represent in this county of over 17,000 residents of whom 97% are NOT involved in livestock production.
I want you to think about the 80 families in the two-mile radius, many who oppose this confinement, who may be affected by odors, flies, and lost property values. I want you to think of their children and the risk they face of contracting asthma, documented in University of Iowa studies. I want you to think how one person may affect so many lives.
I want you to think about how your decision impacts the environment, the value you place on high water quality, a resource essential for life.
I want you to think about all these things when you decide how to score the RWP Master Matrix, what message you want to send to county residents about what is important to you, what importance you place on their well being.
You can maintain the status quo, or you can reach beyond and fail this Master Matrix. I urge you to make that decision well.