The South Dakota Legislature passed House Bill 1201 this year to make it easier for counties to open their doors to the un-Christlike, soul-sapping mechanization of meat production. Rep. G. Mark Mickelson and the Legislature trust counties to use the new rules wisely… but Beadle County apparently can’t even follow the current rules:
A conditional use permit allowing Westside Gilts LLC of Pipestone, Minn., to construct and operate a concentrated animal feeding operation has been revoked by a circuit judge.
…In his ruling, Circuit Judge Jon Erickson found that the county’s comprehensive zoning ordinance was improperly enacted in 2011.
The petitioners had alleged that the county had failed to give proper notice of the time and place of the public hearing on the zoning ordinance, and that no 10-day notice was given of a scheduled public hearing.
…In his decision, Erickson said that “Beadle County landowners were not provided with the opportunity to formally voice their concerns and present evidence in opposition to opposed measures, and providing an avenue for expression of public opinion.
“Thus, it is the decision of this court that the ordinance was improperly enacted and has no force and effect, then the board did not ‘regularly pursue its authority’” [Roger Larsen, “Judge Rules Beadle County Violated Process of Comprehensive Zoning in 2011: Decision Affects Land Wanted for Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation,” Huron Plainsman, 2015.03.23].
Republicans profess to be suspicious of government and say we shouldn’t give government too much power. But when actual abuses of power, like Beadle County’s failure to properly notify citizens of an impending CAFO decision, support the corporate colonizers’ agenda, our Republican legislators give those suspicious governments more power.