Speaking of corporate fascism, big dairies are getting another government handout from South Dakota. Planning and Development District III is spending taxpayer dollars to identify good locations in its 16-county jurisdiction for mega-dairies and other concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).
Oops—make that 13 counties. Yankton County is one of three PD3 members with the good sense to say no to doing capitalists' work for them:
Commissioner Allen Sinclair cited such concerns in opposing the idea of PDIII conducting the study on behalf of the state.
“I don’t think that a County Commission should be out there identifying sites for any commercial activity,” he said. “It’s for the people doing the activity to do their own homework. They should be the ones identifying sites. I’m going to have a real problem endorsing a County Commission activity of this nature.”
Sinclair said the County Commission should become only become involved through the zoning process. Even if it is only giving permission for a study, that could be seen by some as an endorsement of sites identified in the research during a zoning dispute in the future.
“It’s a business deal, and the business people behind it, whether they are banks or the Ag Department, can do any type of study they want to do,” Sinclair said. “But don’t involve the County Commission until you’re bringing it to us for a thumbs up or down based on our rules and regulations” [Nathan Johnson, "County Declines to Join in Ag Study," Yankton Press & Dakotan, 2013.07.02].
Our state already spends too many tax dollars to favor a handful of big businesses. Yankton County isn't shutting the door on state-subsidized CAFOs (though it should!), but at least it is telling the big dairy and feedlot operators to do their own market research.