Starke County Commissioners Adopt Confined Animal Feeding Ordinance

starke-county-courthouseStarke County now has policies and procedures in place to regulate commercial hog farms and similar operations. The commissioners Monday adopted a confined animal feeding ordinance that is more strict that the standards the state already has in place.

The ordinance aims to strike a balance between residential, commercial and public land use conflicts while also protecting agriculture’s ability to grow and change. Other objectives include protecting property values, land, air and water quality and human welfare, safety and well being.

A concentrated animal feeding operation is a large-scale farm. Specific definitions are set out in the ordinance. The owner of such a site must obtain a pre-operation planning permit from the county planning commission before submitting the necessary paperwork to the state for approval.

A CAFO site must be at least 10 acres and will only be allowed on agriculture-zoned property. A route permit must also be obtained from the county highway department for trucks entering and leaving the property. Additionally, operations must be at least two miles outsize the two-mile buffer zone of the communities of Knox, North Judson and Hamlet.

Click CAFO ORDINANCE to read the complete text.