WILSON TOWNSHIP — A local agri-businessman is tentatively planning a new hog finishing operation north of Sabina in Clinton County, but there’s opposition from neighbors.
John Surber with Premier Solutions of Sabina said he and his family have been raising hogs in the area for 15 years, and there have not been problems “and it won’t be a problem this time either.”
Neighbor Michelle Osborn said her concerns include a risk of contaminated drinking water, the odor, a disease, lower property values, and an increase of semi trucks traveling on Burristown Road, the location of the proposed facility.
Surber said the manure from the operation would be applied on soil as fertilizer for neighboring farms.
Wilson Township Trustee Ronald Kendall is mostly a grain farmer who has goats and horses, having got out of the hog business several years ago. Kendall said Surber has “his ducks in a row” with the planned venture, adding that Surber is doing similar things elsewhere.
“It is the country. There are always odors with [farm] animals,” said Kendall.
The township’s board of trustees, of which he is a member, “have no say-so” in the matter, he said.
Viola J. Taylor owns a 90-acre, all-grain farm on Burristown Road plus a home where she’s lived since 1946. She said she is concerned about property values, the manure, and traffic on a narrow township road.
Osborn said she is trying to stop the planned hog facility. She and her husband owned the land sold to Surber at auction. She told the Record-Herald in Washington Court House, which is a sister publication of the News Journal, that she has refused to sign the closing papers on the sale.
In his interview with the News Journal, Surber noted he had not closed yet on the Burristown Road property.
Osborn advises residents within a 2½-mile radius to get their well water tested now before an operation begins. That way, she said, the current water quality will be documented, and any possible later contamination can be demonstrated.
The size of the site is about 19 acres, and sold in the public auction for a reported $155,000.
As published this summer in the News Journal, Surber plans a hog facility in northern Fayette County. Neighbors there oppose the idea, holding concerns similar to Osborn’s and Taylor’s in Clinton County.
Neighbors to the proposed hog operation in Fayette County recently updated Record-Herald reporter Ashley Bunton on the matter, telling her there’s nothing different on that situation and they believe the facility will be built very soon.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.