Fairmont Council Passes Manure Ordinance During Special Friday Meeting

In a special meeting on Friday, the Fairmont City Council unanimously passed an ordinance regulating the discharge of manure within city limits.

Back in June, following the complaints of several residents about odor near their homes on the north end of Fairmont, the council adopted an emergency interim ordinance placing a moratorium on the spreading of manure within city limits.  At that time, staff was directed to study a permanent update to ordinances.

In updating the ordinance, there were conversations with local residents, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, as well as area farmers and owners of farmland within city limits, in order to gather information about responsible practices when spreading manure.

The emergency interim ordinance was set to expire October 1st.  Last Monday, a public hearing was held during the regular city council meeting.  At that time, several residents spoke out in favor of adopting the ordinance.

As drafted, the ordinance amends the city’s nuisance codes to do three things, it prohibits manure from being discharged in land zoned for residential or business use; allows manure to be spread on agricultural and industrial land that is 200 feet away form the boundary of residential and business zones and requires manure be incorporated into the soil immediately following discharge.