I have been slowly watching the deterioration of cities over the past few years as people continue to move into the suburbs. In the process, valuable farmland has been eaten up. As you can probably tell, I’m opposed to urban sprawl. That is the primary reason why I support the livestock siting initiative. The bill, if enacted, would provide permits to livestock farmers to expand their operations.
For years, Wisconsin’s agricultural community has declined because of the barriers to expansion. Thus, the state’s dairy industry has suffered while other states, especially California, have moved in to produce more milk and cheese. Although other factors play a role (such as the federal government’s milk price fixing), local rules have held dairy farmers at bay from helping the state’s agricultural economy grow. As a result, destructive development has turned once prime agricultural land into concrete islands.
I applaud the work of those that made this legislation possible, and I am glad to hear that all sides could finally come to a consensus. Working for the agency, I realize that it took a large amount of time, effort, and resources to get this bill to this point. I hope that it can now swiftly move through the Legislature and to the Governor’s desk for signing.