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Re: E-M:/ Gerald Henning and MDA failure to respond: LSJ today



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Enviro-Mich message from John Klein <john@winpublishing.com>
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I agree that we all want the same thing.  A clean environment. And we  
all are working towards that goal.

For all of us to succeed on this CAFO issue, everyone must understand  
that these CAFO are not your average farm operation. While some may  
find the odors of your local dairy an acceptable tradeoff,  I would  
guess your local dairy does not have 20 million gallons of open waste  
pits that is fills with feces, urine and milkhouse waste, letting is  
ferment for months. I can guarantee you it doesn't smell like the horse  
barns at Greenfield Village or most of the small dairies that used to  
be here. Sometimes it's strong enough to make you vomit almost  
immediately, but most of the time its just real bad.

Just a note that Mr. Henning has had this problem for more than 2-1/2  
years and has made more than 150 calls to the MDA before becoming as  
irate as he had.  He has been ignored by the MDA at all levels. The  
"poor clerk" is all that Mr. Henning is able to speak to.

Again, I invite anyone to visit when when we get the next odor barrage.  
Just send me your phone number.

On Monday, June 23, 2003, at 02:27 PM, Susan Sandell wrote:

> I'm with the DEQ and live across from a farm which doesn't operate on
> this scale, but we have plenty of manure smells when the wind comes  
> from
> upstream.  I consider it a tolerable tradeoff for living outside the
> city limits (and this is NOT meant to start the sprawl discussion
> again!).  Since the news coverage and Anne Woiwode's note took opposite
> points of view over who's more disagreeable, I was just throwing out a
> question whether Mr. Henning had gone above the heads any of those he
> had trouble with  and your note answers that question.
>
> I prefer to think that we who care about the environment and about
> other people are on the same side.  Whether MDA or DEQ let the ball  
> drop
> on this, I don't think that threatening some poor clerk who logs phone
> calls accomplishes anything.
>
>>>> John Klein <john@winpublishing.com> Jun 23, 2003  1:51 PM >>>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------- 
> --
> Enviro-Mich message from John Klein <john@winpublishing.com>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------- 
> --
>
> I am not sure which Michigan agency Susan Sandell is with, but the MDA
>
> has provided no adequate response to anyone in the area concerning the
>
> odor from these CAFOs. Every MDA department director, every local and
>
> appropriate legislator, every health department and even the Michigan
>
> Agriculture Commission ( I personally attended their meetings) have
> been informed of the devastation these CAFOs have inflicted upon their
>
> neighbor. We have been ignored. Mr. Henning's frustration is clearly
> understood.
>
> I had 4 straight days last week of being unable to open my windows,
> more in the previous weeks. When I filed a complaint through the
> "proper channels" called the MDA, they informed me that since these
> farms are in "escalated enforcement" they will not respond to any
> complaints "odor or water". They say it is in the hands on MDEQ. They
>
> have washed their hands of these CAFOs.
>
> When I call the MDEQ Air Quality Division, they tell me it is not in
> their jurisdiction. Nothing happens. Please tell what you would do.
>
> For 16 years, there has never been an odor problem. When the CAFOs
> moved in, the problems began. More than 70 million gallons of feces,
> urine and milkhouse waste is spread on the local ground annually.
> Unfortunately I feel Mr. Henning frustration is just the tip of the
> iceberg.
>
> Please move in with me and invite your friends over for a nice cookout
>
> this weekend. Of course, you'll want to pray for the correct wind
> direction. If not, you can call them, apologize, and tell them not to
>
> come over as we have to do.
>
> Please imagine yourself living with these odor problems everyday and
> thank you for trying to understand.
>
> On Monday, June 23, 2003, at 12:57 PM, Susan Sandell wrote:
>
>>
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
>> --
>> Enviro-Mich message from "Susan Sandell" <SANDELLS@michigan.gov>
>>
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
>> --
>>
>> I wonder whether when courtesy failed (presuming he started that way)
>
>> he
>> attempted to go up the chain of command in MDA or through his
>> legislator
>> rather than trying to get action through threats.  Speaking as a
>> faceless state bureaucrat, I don't respond very positively to verbal
>> abuse either  I wonder how many others have been motivated by it,
>> government or private sector.  However, if I'm not doing my job (or
> if
>> someone thinks I'm not), it's perfectly legitimate to go to my boss,
> my
>> department director, or a legislator to call me on it.  He handled
> his
>> complaint inappropriately and should be big enough to take the
>> consequences.
>>
>>>>> "danderso" <danderso@remc4.k12.mi.us> Jun 23, 2003  9:58 AM >>>
>> Alternatively, if you really prefer to avoid Mr. Hennings situation
>> hire a  competent lawyer with some integrity and sue the cow crap out
>
>> of
>> them. Of course, that costs a lot of money. Maybe Mr. Vermuelen,
>> compassionate soul that he is would be willing to do some pro-bono
>> work.
>>   ----- Original Message -----
>>   From: Kenneth Vermeulen
>>   To: enviro-mich@great-lakes.net ; anne.woiwode@sierraclub.org
>>   Sent: Monday, June 23, 2003 7:09 AM
>>   Subject: Re: E-M:/ Gerald Henning and MDA failure to respond: LSJ
>> today
>>
>>
>>   Alternatively, if you really prefer to avoid Mr. Henning's
> situation,
>> avoid discharging firearms in the direction of others, and avoid
> using
>> profanity on recorded messages.
>>
>>   Ken Vermeulen
>>>>> "Anne Woiwode" <anne.woiwode@sierraclub.org> 06/22/03 10:56AM
>>>>>
>>
>>
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
>> --
>>   Enviro-Mich message from "Anne Woiwode"
>> <anne.woiwode@sierraclub.org>
>>
>>
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
>> --
>>
>>   E-M folks:
>>
>>   The story about the Ingham County Prosecutor going after Gerald
>> Henning,
>>   the 82 yr old farmer from near Hudson, MI, because of his
> frustrated
>> and
>>   irritated voice mail messages on the Michigan Department of
>>   Agriculture's Right to Farm complaint line shows up on the front
> page
>> of
>>   the Lansing State Journal today.  Over the course of almost three
>> years,
>>   Mr. Henning lodged complaints with a virtually entirely
>> non-responsive
>>   MDA, while the problems continued totally unabated.
>>
>>   The LSJ story focuses on the free speech issues, and drastically
>>   understates the horrific environmental and health consequences of
>> the
>>   CAFO next door that caused and continued to fuel Mr. Henning's
>> response.
>>   Prosecuting Gerald Henning is a classic case of blaming the victim
>> --
>>   the MDA folks who filed the complaints and the prosecutors should
>> have
>>   been forced to live in his house during the worst episodes before
>> they
>>   brought charges against him. If you want to know what life has
> been
>> like
>>   in the Hudson area for Mr. Henning and his neighbors with 10 CAFOs
>>   having plopped down there, go to www.nocafos.org which is the
> website
>> of
>>   the Environmentally Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan
>>   (ECCSCM).
>>
>>   The Lansing State Journal story is at:
>>   http://www.lsj.com/news/local/030622_obscene_1a-10a.html
>>
>>
>>   <<-->><<-->><<-->><<-->><<-->><<-->><<-->>
>>   Anne Woiwode, Staff Director, Sierra Club Mackinac Chapter
>>   109 East Grand River Avenue, Lansing, Michigan 48906
>>   517-484-2372; fax 517-484-3108  anne.woiwode@sierraclub.org
>>   visit the Mackinac Chapter on the web at
>> http://michigan.sierraclub.org
>>
>>
>>
>>
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