The Taylor County Zoning Committee met Wednesday morning. Zoning administrator Kyle Noonan told the group that his office is working to rewrite the county’s shoreland ordinance. The state is changing language regarding water front structures. The county’s codes will need to be updated to comply with the new state regulations.
On March 15th a meeting was held in Gilman to discuss the possibility of a new 5,000 sow operation being located in the town of Taft or Aurora. Representatives of Waukon Feed Ranch of North East Iowa requested the meeting. Waukon Feed Ranch is looking for a site in Western Taylor County because there is not currently any large hog facilities in the area. Preliminary plans call for an operation which would cost an estimated $8 million with 2 or 3 barns. There would be manure storage below the barns in pits 8 to 12 feet deep. The manure would be injected into the ground to minimize odor.
Some of the numbers include 5,000 sows which farrow approximately 2.5 times a year. There would be approximately 960 lactating sows in any given time. From 2,400 to 2,500 piglets would leave the facility every week shipped out of the area over 100 miles. There would be individual pens. Water consumption is 6 to 7 gallons of water per day per pig. To feed the animals, 5 to 7 semi loads of feed per week are needed. The farm would create 10 to 15 jobs. The developers are hoping to use local contractors. The possibility of future sites in the area may happen, at 10 to 15 miles apart.
Committee member Lester Lewis indicated that the developers will need to check with the local townships for road weight limit restrictions. Preliminary plans call for 2014 proposed construction with the farm opening in 2015. DNR and Taylor County Permits would be needed.