Bill to be on Senate Floor March 29; Calls Needed Before 9 a.m.
A bill that paves the way for more and larger factory farms in Minnesota is headed to the Senate Floor on Wednesday, March 29, and your voice is needed now to stop it.
We notified you earlier about Senate File 1016, which would double the size a factory farm can be before environmental review is required. This bad bill was rolled into the larger Environmental and Natural Resources Omnibus Finance Bill. When that bill was in the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Carla Nelson (R–Rochester) made a motion to take this bad language out. The motion failed on a tie vote, but with more calls we can win on the Senate Floor.
Doubling the size factory farms can be before environmental review happens is about paving the way for more and larger factory farms in Minnesota. The law now is that factory farms over 1,000 animals must undergo environmental review. These are the largest 7% of feedlots in our state. (One thousand animal units is 3,333 hogs, 714 dairy cows and 1,000 steers.) The current threshold of 1,000 animal units is so large that only 9 factory farms were required to do an environmental review in 2016.
If passed, this bill would mean that farms now built to house 990 animal units in order to avoid the environmental review cutoff could be built to house 1,990 animal units and still avoid environmental review. Existing factory farms housing 990 animal units could expand to 1,990 animal units without undergoing an environmental review.
This bill means Minnesota will have bigger factory farms and more of them. It will be on the Senate Floor Wednesday, March 29, so take action now to stop it. Calls are needed before 9 a.m. on Wednesday.