COLUMBUS – Sixteen Ohioans are taking up the challenge of advising the Ohio Department of Agriculture on the creation of regulations governing the state’s large-scale livestock and poultry operations.
Ohio Agriculture Director Fred L. Dailey announced the advisory committee members April 27. The group’s first meeting is June 7.
The first order of business for the committee, which serves an advisory capacity only, will be to help draft the new rules governing construction standards for all new and existing large livestock farms.
The comprehensive permitting rules will include all aspects of manure storage, handling, transportation and land application, as well as the farms’ insect and rodent control plans.
Kevin Elder, who is coordinating the ODA’s new Livestock Environmental Permitting Program, will chair the committee during its first year.
Elder said he hopes to have a representative of the Ohio Commission on Dispute Resolution serve as an impartial facilitator during the rule-making process. Elder’s goal is to get permitting rules drafted by Oct. 1.
The individuals and the interest group represented are as follows:
Pat Hord, Crawford County, swine industry; Wendell Douglass, Wayne County, dairy industry; Bill Cleland Jr., Defiance County, beef cattle; Tim Weaver, Darke County, poultry; Tim Barnes, Delaware County, sheep; Tony Foshey DVM, veterinary medicine; Terry Haworth, Darke County, elected official whose jurisdiction includes a concentrated animal feeding facility;
Doug Alderman, Knox County, wastewater utilities; Kim Coy, Summit County, drinking water utilities; Peter Schade, Cuyahoga County, Ohio Environmental Health Association; Susan Studer, Franklin County, Ohio Environmental Council; Ben Stinner, Wayne County, Ohio Alliance for the Environment; and the following at-large members: Chuck Divelbliss, Licking County, concerned citizen; Kit Fogle, Franklin County, Ohio Farmers Union; David White, Franklin County, Ohio Livestock Coalition and Ohio Farm Bureau Federation; and Jim Young, Tuscarawas County, Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts.
The first year’s appointments are staggered terms. Selected randomly, six members received one-year terms; five members received two-year terms; and another five members received three-year terms.
The authorizing legislation for the new Livestock Environmental Permitting Program, S.B. 141, specified the advisory committee must represent a cross-section of groups interested in large livestock farms and the environment.
“I think there’s a lot of expertise on all sides,” said Ohio Farmers Union Executive Director Kit Fogle of the committee’s membership. “That’s going to be respected.”
Fogle said he hopes to bring a common-sense approach to the committee’s work. “I want to see agriculture survive and prosper, but I think it’s important that we do it in a good neighborly and responsible way.”
“What we’re trying to do is open the issue up to a diverse audience,” Elder said.
The program is the newest division within the state ag department and will regulate livestock and poultry operations housing more than 1,000 animal units.
(Editor Susan Crowell can be reached at 1-800-837-3419 or at firstname.lastname@example.org).
Ohio Department of Agriculture
Livestock Environmental Permitting Program Division