To the Editor: Community is scarred by mega-dairy battle

The 2nd District Appellate Court in Elgin issued its ruling on Dec. 22, 2010, regarding the Traditions Dairy project in Jo Daviess County, concurring with the previous Jo Daviess County Circuit Court ruling in favor of dairyman A.J. Bos. The judges did, however, uphold the right for citizens to protect themselves and their communities by putting to rest the empty threats of H.O.M.E.S. being sued for damages by Traditions Investments LLC.

H.O.M.E.S. (Helping Others Maintain Environmental Standards) is a 501 (c)(3) and will continue its public education, outreach and water quality test efforts; especially important in light of the purple discharge from Traditions Dairy, supposedly a zero discharge facility, last October. That was the fourth documented discharge because of silage leachate… As the IEPA, USEPA, and the Attorney General enforce their permitting process, Bos is finding it very difficult to ever operate his mega-dairy in its present design and location.

A.J. Bos and his project proposal, illegally permitted by the IDOA [Illinois Department of Agriculture], and trial have left bruises and scars on the communities in the area. Divisiveness caused by the IDOA, Big Ag, Farm Bureau and paid lobbyists, pitted citizens against each other. People will be defined forever by “who was for it” and “who was against it.”

There is a movement reaching across this country. Citizens want their rights back. H.O.M.E.S. has connected with people who have been in battles for 10-15 years. With these people, we will fight to reclaim these rights and standings because without them, we have no safety net. Without these groups, polluted air and water will be the only things our children and their children will ever know.

Susan Turner

Warren, Ill.

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