Appeal aims to block planned 4,000-hog facility

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A group of homeowners has asked a county judge to block a southern Indiana farmer from being allowed to build a facility that would house 4,000 hogs.

The group is appealing a Jackson County zoning board's decision last month to approve the confined feeding operation for a site that's a couple miles north of the town of Crothersville.

The appeal filed with a county court maintains the hog facility will hurt property values, increase odors and will expose area residents to health problems from water or air contamination, The Tribune of Seymour reported.

Kyle Broshears said the appeal was predictable and expected.

"We went into this process with our eyes open and our minds set on what it would take to win this battle for agriculture and farmers' rights," he said. "Our attorneys are already hard at work on securing the future of livestock production in Jackson County."

The zoning board took its 4-0 vote at nearly 1:30 a.m. after six hours of public comments before a crowd of more than 100 people who packed a courthouse meeting room and spilled into a hallway.

But the appeal filed by 14 residents argues people didn't have sufficient access to the meeting, that the three-minute limit for each person to speak was too short, and that 44 project opponents didn't get to speak that night because of illness or lateness of the hour.

A court hearing hasn't yet been scheduled on the appeal.

Broshears' plans call for spending about $900,000 on the facility that would include an 81-by-417-foot building housing the hogs and a concrete pit holding about 1 million gallons of manure.

The proposal for the site about 40 miles north of Louisville, Kentucky, still needs approval from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management. Broshears said construction could begin next spring or summer.

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