Letter: Don’t eliminate right to file claims about state farms

Published 10:24 am Thursday, March 19, 2015

From growing up on a small family pig farm in Medford, I understand the importance of responsible agriculture in our rural community. Having lived the majority of my life here, I have seen the importance of ethical agriculture at my friends’ small family dairy farm and how dramatically mega farms negatively affect one’s environment and way of life. Therefore, I’m extremely disappointed in several Minnesota senators and representatives who have introduced bills (SF482 and HF582) that protect large-scale factory farms and harm rural Minnesotans. When mega farms move into an area, they bring air pollution, water pollution, noise, and an unbearable smell from all the waste the animals produce, not to mention lowered property values. There have been multiple cases of rural residents throughout the country bringing these farms to court and winning, but these bills (SF482 and HF582) intend to stop that from ever happening. They would eliminate a citizen’s right to file “public nuisance” claims against these farms.

We shouldn’t give industrial farms the right to pollute our rural communities with no repercussions. I ask for the citizens and lawmakers of Minnesota to oppose SF482 and HF582.

Melissa Siebke,

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