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No help for Callaway health committee

No help for Callaway health committee

November 21st, 2017 by Helen Wilbers in Local News

Callaway County residents and other visitors listen to the Monday meeting of the health ordinance committee. Committee members ultimately moved to request written guidance from commissioners before their next meeting.

Photo by Helen Wilbers /News Tribune.

Members of the Callaway County health ordinance committee are still awaiting guidance from the County Commission.

Commissioners said last month they would provide the committee with a clearer sense of purpose.

"Go ahead and set the date for your next meeting in three weeks, and we'll have guidelines for you," Jungermann said at the time.

Commissioner Roger Fischer — who proposed the health ordinance — said last Friday he planned on providing a list of expectations and guidelines to the committee, with the help of other commissioners.

However, no such guidance materialized.

"Unfortunately, I did not receive (the guidance) by the time I left my office to come here today," moderator Rick Hess said.

No commissioners were present at committee's Monday meeting; they were attending the Missouri Association of Counties conference. Committee members said they tried unsuccessfully to reach commissioners by phone.

The commission formed the committee to advise them on Fischer's proposed health ordinance. Hess said while the initial draft applied only to certain townships in the county, the ordinance's current form would cover all Callaway County.

It would apply to new confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) with a specified density of animals: 1,000 or more animal units at 150 or more per acre.

The ordinance would establish setbacks to keep CAFOs and their waste a specified distance from populated areas, water and recreational facilities. It also introduces a variety of other safety measures to keep diseases from spreading to people. The ordinance can be viewed at bit.ly/2qYuK7d.

Committee member Tim Safranski moved to schedule the committee's next meeting and request written guidelines one week prior to the next meeting's date. If that deadline isn't met, he proposed rescheduling the meeting.

His motion passed unanimously. Committee members expressed frustration at being unable to move forward with examining the ordinance.

"All these community members took the time to come out here and listen to us," said Jeff Jones.

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