PA- Sludge, Senate Passes Bill to Eliminate Township Control of Corporate Factory Farms and Sludge Application
From : From : "hshields" <hshields@worldpath.net> "hshields" From : "hshields" Subject : Subject : PENNSYLVANIA - PA- Sludge, Senate Passes Bill to Eliminate Township Control of Corporate Factory Farms and Sludge Application PENNSYLVANIA - PA- Sludge, Senate Passes Bill to Eliminate Township Control of Corporate Factory Farms and Sludge Application Subject : PENNSYLVANIA - PA- Sludge, Senate Passes Bill to Eliminate Township Control of Corporate Factory Farms and Sludge Application Date : Date : Wed, 8 May 2002 20:00:42 -0400 Wed, 8 May 2002 20:00:42 -0400 Date : Wed, 8 May 2002 20:00:42 -0400

Pennsylvania Senate Passes Bill to Eliminate Township Control of Corporate Factory Farms and Land Application of Sewage Sludge

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Harrisburg (May 2, 2002)

- On Tuesday, April 30th, the Pennsylvania Senate voted to adopt Senate Bill 1413. That Bill, which began as Senate Bill 826, seeks to eliminate Township government control of corporate factory farms and land applied sewage sludge. Local Senator Terry Punt co-sponsored the legislation and voted in favor of the Bill. The infamous Senate Bill 826 - the precursor to Senate Bill 1413 - had drawn wide opposition from Township Supervisors, family farmers, and community leaders across the state. The Bill - originally introduced in May of 2001- had stalled in the Senate Agricultural Committee.
In a legislative sleight of hand, the Bill was reinvented by Senator Roger Madigan (R-Bradford) and other co-sponsors into Senate Bill 1413. An internal Pennsylvania Farm Bureau memorandum leaked to the public admitted that the transformation was necessary to "avoid any bad publicity" which had surrounded SB 826. Senate Bill 1413 expands Pennsylvania's "Right to Farm" Law by prohibiting municipal governments from adopting Ordinances which restrict agricultural operations.
The Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and other factory farm proponents have long argued that factory farms qualify for the special protections afforded by the law. The Bill authorizes factory farm corporations to sue and recover attorneys' fees from the Townships which adopt Ordinances. Township members of the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors (PSATS) voted overwhelmingly to oppose the Bill at their April Convention.
In addition, Township Supervisors unanimously adopted a resolution supporting local control over sludge corporations seeking to land apply sewage sludge. Due to the "fast-tracking" of Senate Bill 1413, many state Senators were not informed of PSATS' opposition to the legislation. The Bill was introduced on April 17th, moved out of Committee on the 23rd, and presented for a full vote of the Senate on the 30th. Thomas Linzey, an attorney advising several Townships on factory farm and sludge issues, declared that "the Senate's action is a declaration of war against Pennsylvania local governments attempting to control agribusiness and sludge corporations. The legislation is aimed directly at those Townships which have attempted to respond to citizens seeking to protect their health, safety, and welfare." Senator Terry Punt, who had decided not to co-sponsor the original Senate Bill 826, co-sponsored and voted for Senate Bill 1413, even after being informed of PSATS' opposition to the Bill by Franklin County constituents. -30- ******************************************************************************************************* "
It's said that the process may have been speeded up because townships are trying to control sludge for ag use, and this would be a way to stop that."

State bill stirs debate in Manor Twp.

<A HREF="http://www.lancasteronline.com/intell_news/manorm7.shtm">State <http://216.32.180.250/cgi-bin/linkrd?_lang=EN&lah=06d8852d3400e37112a594a693a8e02e&lat=1021308375&hm___action=http%3a%2f%2fwww%2elancasteronline%2ecom%2fintell_news%2fmanorm7%2eshtm%22%3eState> bill stirs debate in Manor Twp.</A> Tuesday, May 7 By Larry Alexander Intelligencer Journal Staff A state bill that would limit township control over large factory farms and the use of sewage sludge on fields sparked dialogue at Monday's Manor Township Board of Supervisors meeting. Resident Pat Lemay asked Supervisor Edward C. Goodhart III about Senate Bill 1413. Passed by the Senate April 30, the bill would prohibit townships from creating ordinances that "unfairly discriminate against agricultural operations." It also would allow lawsuits against municipalities that adopt restrictive ordinances and force municipalities to reimburse attorney fees and court costs to the plaintiff. The bill was opposed by the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors. Goodhart is president of that body. "As president of PSATS' executive committee, did you take any steps to oppose this legislation?" Lemay asked. Goodhart said a PSATS's lobbyist met with Bradford County Republican Sen. Roger Madigan, the bill's chief sponsor, and expressed the group's concerns. Goodhart said the bill is being pushed by the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and other farm organizations. Lemay said she believed some senators might not have understood what the bill entails due to the speed at which it passed. "The bill was introduced April 17, passed by the agriculture committee April 23 and by the Senate on the 30th," she said. "It's said that the process may have been speeded up because townships are trying to control sludge for ag use, and this would be a way to stop that." Goodhart told her the approved bill is a modification of a previous one that was even more "horrendous." "It would have excluded agriculture from any and all township regulations, including zoning regulations," Goodhart said. He said he met with people from the farm bureau and Penn Ag Industries, which represents feed suppliers and other farm support industries, "to try to fashion something that wasn't as bad as that." Goodhart also said he met with state Sen. Noah Wenger, who voiced concern that "many townships" have passed ordinances that "go beyond ... what we can legally do." The farm organizations "got the ear" of the Legislature, he said, and SB 1413 "was the reaction." Pennsylvania Senate Passes Bill to Eliminate Township Control of Corporate Factory Farms and Land Application of Sewage Sludge FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Harrisburg (May 2, 2002) - On Tuesday, April 30th, the Pennsylvania Senate voted to adopt Senate Bill 1413. That Bill, which began as Senate Bill 826, seeks to eliminate Township government control of corporate factory farms and land applied sewage sludge. Local Senator Terry Punt co-sponsored the legislation and voted in favor of the Bill. The infamous Senate Bill 826 - the precursor to Senate Bill 1413 - had drawn wide opposition from Township Supervisors, family farmers, and community leaders across the state. The Bill - originally introduced in May of 2001- had stalled in the Senate Agricultural Committee. In a legislative sleight of hand, the Bill was reinvented by Senator Roger Madigan (R-Bradford) and other co-sponsors into Senate Bill 1413. An internal Pennsylvania Farm Bureau memorandum leaked to the public admitted that the transformation was necessary to "avoid any bad publicity" which had surrounded SB 826. Senate Bill 1413 expands Pennsylvania's "Right to Farm" Law by prohibiting municipal governments from adopting Ordinances which restrict agricultural operations. The Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and other factory farm proponents have long argued that factory farms qualify for the special protections afforded by the law. The Bill authorizes factory farm corporations to sue and recover attorneys' fees from the Townships which adopt Ordinances. Township members of the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors (PSATS) voted overwhelmingly to oppose the Bill at their April Convention. In addition, Township Supervisors unanimously adopted a resolution supporting local control over sludge corporations seeking to land apply sewage sludge. Due to the "fast-tracking" of Senate Bill 1413, many state Senators were not informed of PSATS' opposition to the legislation. The Bill was introduced on April 17th, moved out of Committee on the 23rd, and presented for a full vote of the Senate on the 30th. Thomas Linzey, an attorney advising several Townships on factory farm and sludge issues, declared that "the Senate's action is a declaration of war against Pennsylvania local governments attempting to control agribusiness and sludge corporations. The legislation is aimed directly at those Townships which have attempted to respond to citizens seeking to protect their health, safety, and welfare." Senator Terry Punt, who had decided not to co-sponsor the original Senate Bill 826, co-sponsored and voted for Senate Bill 1413, even after being informed of PSATS' opposition to the Bill by Franklin County constituents. -30- ******************************************************************************************************
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