SIBLEY — There are now two swine facilities proposed to be built in the Sibley area in western Ford County.
An informational meeting about one of them will be held by the Illinois Department of Agriculture at 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, at the Sullivant Township Hall, 125 W. Ohio St., Sibley.
The meeting was requested by the Ford County Board to allow the public to ask questions and present oral and written testimony about the proposed 2,240-animal-unit swine facility, which would be located about 1 1/2 miles west of Sibley and would be owned and operated by Philip, Caleb, Joel and Ryan Hartman of Sibley.
No meeting has been set yet regarding the second swine facility — which also has a 2,240-animal capacity — although the Ford County Board can still request one within 30 days of Jan. 2, when the board was sent a notice of "intent to construct" form by the state ag department. Alternatively, the public can request a public meeting by 75 registered voters in the county petitioning the county board, within that same 30-day time frame, to have one held.
The second facility is being proposed by Stanley Mueller and Mueller Pork of Sibley and would be built about 1.4 miles northeast of Sibley.
At the Jan. 17 meeting, the ag department will take evidence on eight aspects of the Hartmans’ proposed swine facility:
— Whether registration and livestock waste management plan certification requirements, if required, are met by the Hartmans’ notice of intent to construct.
— Whether the design, location or proposed operation will protect the environment by being consistent with the state’s Livestock Management Facilities Act.
— Whether the location minimizes any incompatibility with the surrounding area’s character.
— Whether the facility is located within a 100-year floodplain or an otherwise environmentally sensitive area and whether construction standards set forth in the notice of intent to construct are consistent with the goal of protecting the safety of the area.
— Whether the owner or operator has submitted plans for operation that minimize the likelihood of any environmental damage to the surrounding area from spills, runoff and leaching.
— Whether odor-control plans are reasonable and incorporate reasonable or innovative odor-reduction technologies.
— Whether traffic patterns minimize the effect on existing traffic flows.
— Whether construction of the facility is consistent with existing community growth, tourism, recreation or economic development.
Questions or comments may be directed the ag department at 217-785-2427.