TOPEKA, Kan. – A bill that would make it easier for corporate hog production facilities to expand in rural counties passed the Kansas House of representatives, according to MCT Regional News.
The bill, which passed on a 106-8 vote, would give county commissioners the authority to permit or deny an expansion. Citizens would have a 60-day protest period to circulate a petition for signatures to force a vote at the next county, state or special countywide election, according to the report. The number of signatures needed would equal 5 percent of the voters in the county who voted for the office of secretary of state in the last general election.
Currently, establishing corporate hog production in a Kansas county requires an election in the county.
The Kansas Department of Agriculture requested the legislation, according to MCT Regional News. Other supporters included the Kansas Pork Association and Hodgeman County Economic Development. The Kansas Rural Center and the Kansas Farmers Union opposed the bill.