(BICKNELL) - Farbest Foods has been given the okay to build 6 turkey brooding barns northeast of Bicknell.
The Vincennes Sun Commercial reports that 50 property owners attended the Area Plan Commission meeting Tuesday held at the Fortnightly Building.
The paper reports that Susan Lynn was the first to speak saying the land where the barns would be built once belonged to her father, Bob Snyder.
The property was sold at auction following his death, and current county commissioner and area farmer, Rowe Sargent. purchased it and sold a portion of it to Farbest for its planned brooding operation.
Lynn said Sargent "abused his political position" for his own financial gain by selling the land to Farbest.
Other residents said they worried about flooding caused by heavy rain and how storm water would be drained from the area and whether the nearby ditches and White River would be contaminated.
They also cited concerns about odor and reduced land values.
Throughout the meeting, Farbest repeatedly outlined their extensive cleaning process, and discussed drainage plans -- which have been approved by the Knox County Drainage Board.
Farbest, also presented their side with the use experts like Andy Tauer with the Indiana Soybean Alliance.
He said a recent study done by Indiana University's Kelley School of Business, showed property values around livestock farms tend to increase rather than decrease.
A representative from the Indiana State Poultry Association, commended Farbest as a company that does "an excellent job" of following all state regulations.
Eventually APC voted to allow the barns with only Fran Rottet voting no.
The turkey barns will be part of Farbest's Knox County operations which include the $70 million processing plant being built in the U.S. 41 Industrial Park and the milling operation being built in Bruceville.
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