Proposed pig farm causing stink in Jackson County

CONCORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WLNS) — A proposal that would drop 5,000 pigs into a rural area of Jackson County is raising a stink.

6 News was in Concord Township Tuesday to find out more about the situation.

Robert Jordan built his retirement house in Concord Township to enjoy some peace and quiet.

But he says the serenity he’s enjoyed for years could be coming to an end.

“It’s a disaster for the area,” Jordan said.

A pig farm that can hold 5,000 hogs is in the planning stages across from his house on Litle Road.

Neighbors fear a farm that size is too big for this mostly residential area and would bring traffic, pollution and foul smells.

Jordan estimates dozens of homes and an elementary school are in the impact zone.

“When the wind blows from a certain direction, they’re going to get hit. They’re stretching the word ‘farm’. That’s not a farming unit. That’s a factory,” Jordan said.

Lately lots of people have been packing meetings at the Concord Township Office to voice their concerns about the pig farm.

But the township supervisor says it’s not a done deal yet.

The planning commission still has to approve permits for the site.

Once the permits are cleared, final approval comes from the board of trustees.

The farm has already met local and state requirements.

“So there’s only so far we can go,” said Concord Township Supervisor Al Cavasin.

Cavasin says he doesn’t know how the board will vote but he feels a compromise can be reached.

“Negotiate an agreement between people who want to bring business to the community and people who want to maintain the peaceable enjoyment of their own property,” Cavasin said.

Cavasin says the farmer intends to raise hogs on the property, and when they get to a certain size, ship them to a pork processing facility in Branch County for processing.

Messages asking for comment were not returned by the potential pig farmer, Richard Dobbins.

But Jerry Posey, who is letting the farmer use some of his property, says once it’s built neighbors probably won’t even notice it’s there.

“The way it’s been explained to me is there’s very close control of the odors and the manure. It shouldn’t be a problem,” Posey said.

Jordan says he hopes township officials realize what they could be dropping in people’s backyards.

“They don’t have the right to destroy my chance to sit in here, watching my flag, breathing fresh air, and drinking fresh water,” Jordan said.

The next vote on the pig proposal is happening Thursday at 7:30 p.m.

It’s taking place during the planning commission meeting at the Concord Township Office at 121 Grove Street.

 

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