Franklin County changes mind on ordinance
BEDFORD, Iowa -- A southwest Iowa county has become the fourth county in Iowa to pass a moratorium blocking any new construction of large livestock confinements.
With a unanimous vote by the board of supervisors March 28, Taylor County followed Adair, Cerro Gordo and Franklin counties to pass the moratorium in the past month.
Franklin County officials rescinded their ordinance earlier last week because of a lawsuit filed against the county.
Taylor County's ordinance restricts any new livestock confinements to holding a maximum of 500 hogs or cattle.
Only about 15 residents attended the 2 1/2-hour meeting on the ordinance, according to the Omaha World-Herald. Two local hog producers opposed it.
Under Iowa agriculture laws, counties have no authority to regulate or control livestock facilities.
In recent months, county officials have argued that they can place moratoriums on confinement facilities under state laws affecting county health boards.
"Based on the research, if county health boards don't do anything they are derelict in their duties," Taylor County supervisor Lee Little said.
Iowa lawmakers are considering a bill that could place new regulations on livestock facilities.
That bill still would not give counties local control over siting confinements.