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DES MOINES – DNR reminded the Iowa State Association of Counties this week that counties interested in evaluating construction permits for proposed animal feeding facilities must adopt construction evaluation resolutions.
“We wanted county boards of supervisors to have advance notice this year, since many of them are meeting remotely,” said Kelli Book, DNR attorney. “Although county boards must submit the resolution to DNR between Jan. 1 and 31 of 2021, this allows extra time for boards to consider their decision.”
On average, 88 counties pass a resolution each year, which allows them to review construction permit applications required for larger totally roofed animal feeding operations (confinements).
Producers in counties that file the resolutions must meet additional standards in their construction permits than sites in other counties. They must earn points on a master matrix by choosing a site and using practices that reduce effects on the environment and the community.
The Master Matrix development, submittal and approval process allows applicants and county supervisors to discuss options for site selection, facility type and management. The county submits a recommendation to the DNR on the permit application after reviewing the master matrix items the applicant selected.
Counties that participate in the master matrix process may accompany DNR on site visits to proposed locations. The county board of supervisors may also appeal the DNR’s preliminary approval of a permit to the Environmental Protection Commission.
County boards of supervisors may approve the resolutions at any time, but must submit resolutions between Jan. 1 and 31, 2021. Send resolutions to Kelli Book at DNR, 502 E. Ninth St., Des Moines, IA 50319 or email to Kelli.Book@dnr.iowa.gov. Sign-ups in January apply to permit applications DNR receives from February 2021 through January 2022.
For historical information on counties that adopted resolutions, check the DNR website at www.iowadnr.gov/afo and search for master matrix.
More information is available from the Iowa State Association of Counties at www.iowacounties.org.