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Hanson County hog barn plan heads to court

ALEXANDRIA -- A Hanson County couple has filed a complaint to halt the construction of a proposed hog barn between Alexandria and Emery, arguing the county's leaders had deficiencies in the hearing process for the project's approval.

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ALEXANDRIA - A Hanson County couple has filed a complaint to halt the construction of a proposed hog barn between Alexandria and Emery, arguing the county's leaders had deficiencies in the hearing process for the project's approval.

A court filing in the First Circuit Court filed on behalf of Loren Huber and Amy Nolan-Huber, of rural Alexandria, seeks a writ of prohibition to stop the project. A hearing is scheduled for 1 p.m. July 25 in Alexandria.

R. Shawn Tornow, the attorney for the Hubers, argues that the county's Board of Adjustment meeting in May to finally approve the Pleasant Township project was illegal.

"(The Huber family) submits that, perhaps more importantly, Respondents specifically failed to fully consider or address at hearing and to make required the finding that, '... the granting of the conditional use will not adversely affect the public interest,' " the appeal said, citing the Hanson County Zoning Ordinance's reference to the public interest.

Triple K Land, LLC, of rural Alexandria, has proposed to build an 8,680-square-foot facility to house 2,400 pigs in a swine production nursery. It is owned by members of the Kayser family, which was represented by Joshua and Kyle Kayser in the application process.

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Hanson County made mistakes in the initial legal description of where the project was being built when the conditional use permit was first filed in February. That led to a re-application at the April 18 meeting for the county's zoning board, which unanimously approved the project. The same took place with the Board of Adjustment on May 16.

"(The Hubers)-as a prospective adversely affected property owner-had a firm and demonstrable belief that the required level of due process would not be provided to him and other opponents to this (conditional use permit) since (county officials)-by and through their prior actions of its format unanimous vote as well as its on-the-record statements of support herein-could not provide fair and impartial consideration of such matter," the writ of prohibition says.

The complaint also raises issue that no member of the county's Board of Adjustment made a legal motion to approve the Triple K conditional use permit request in that May meeting. Instead, according to the transcript from the court reporter at the meeting, the motion was articulated by Brian McGinnis, who works for District III Planning in Yankton.

The farm will be owned by Triple K, but Sunterra Farms will own the pigs. The project was previously scheduled to be completed this October.

The required setback in Hanson County is 1,000 feet, and the county's findings said the nearest home is about 4,000 feet (about three-quarters of a mile) away from the proposed barn site. The Hubers say the facility was proposed to be 90 feet from their property line, and argue that's too close to their home.

Related Topics: ALEXANDRIA
Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at mtraxler@mitchellrepublic.com.
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