Commissioners adopt zoning regs on manure composting

    Following a public hearing that lasted less than 15 minutes, commissioners approved the recommended county zoning changes to address manure composting and storage.
    Charley Colton, chair of the county planning commission, discussed the additions and changes made to the zoning regulations.
    The commission forwarded an entirely new section of the zoning to deal with composting of manure.
    The regulation defines equivalent manure production per animal unit.
    It adds a minimum setback of one mile, meaning a composting site can be no closer than one mile to the corner of the nearest occupied residence.
    It also specifies the stockpiling of manure and/or compost for later application can be no closer than one quarter of a mile from an occupied residence, commercial facility, school, church or other public facility.
    Stockpiling cannot exceed eight months.
Setback waiver provision
    Both the new composting regulations and existing intensive livestock regulations now include a waiver provision for developers.
    Under the provision, a setback could be set aside if 100 percent of the owners of the residences or facilities outlined above sign a waiver supporting the proposed project or use.
    Previously, the zoning allowed for a two-thirds waiver provision of owners. However, that provision was removed but no formal 100 percent waiver had ever been added to the rules until Tuesday.
    About 10 owners of properties near the proposed Aurora dairy site attended the hearing.
    None of them contested the proposed setbacks for manure composting. Several noted they and the planning commission had worked together to determine the one-mile setback and all were satisfied with proposal as approved by the commissioners.
Aurora Dairy hearing

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