WMC: Eau Claire County’s Attempt to Block Livestock Facilities Unlawful


WMC Sent Letter to County Board Urging Them to Reject the Moratorium Proposal

MADISON – Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce (WMC) Director of Tax, Transportation and Legal Affairs Cory Fish sent a letter to the Eau Claire County Board of Supervisors on Monday urging them to respect the Wisconsin Constitution and follow the law.

The County Board could vote soon on “An Ordinance to Impose a Temporary Moratorium on the Expansion and Creation of Large-Scale Livestock Facilities Pending 12 Month Review,” which is outside the authority of the Board.

“Moratoriums are one of the most intrusive regulatory burdens government can impose on businesses,” Fish wrote in the letter. “When a government makes the decision to do so, it must have the appropriate legal authority and policy basis. In this instance, the County does not appear to have either.”

The proposal would essentially block any new large-scale livestock facilities in the county and restrict the growth of Wisconsin’s ever-important agriculture industry. Currently, only one such facility exists in Eau Claire County.

“This resolution seems to be more about making a political statement and unfairly targeting one of Wisconsin’s most important economic sectors, as opposed to a thoughtful policy response to an actual harm caused by large livestock facilities in Eau Claire County,” Fish added. “If enacted, the moratorium ordinance would be unlawful and unenforceable per § 93.30 of the Wisconsin Statutes and the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s holding in Adams v. Wis. Livestock Facilities Siting Review Bd.

WMC’s letter was sent to all members of the Eau Claire County Board of Supervisors, in addition to Eau Claire County Administrator Kathryn Schauf and Eau Claire County Corporation Counsel Keith R. Zehms.

Click here to view the full letter.


For more information, please contact:
Nick Novak, 608.258.3400