Please respond: Joe Healy, Dan Klimisch, Cheri Loest!

The Yankton County voters elected you to make changes and they want them accomplished sooner rather than later.

I want to know how you will vote on the change you owe us that you had plenty of time to do. I want to know — yes or no; if not, I will take it to a public vote.

The people of Yankton County will decide it for you, (even though) that’s your job.

#1. Amend Section 513 paragraph 1 as follows:

The minimum lot area shall-be two (2) acres.

#2. Amend Section 519 as follows:

Class A (5000-10000) — Section 519 (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7A, 8A, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

Class B (3000-4999) — Section 519 (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7B, 8B, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

Class C (2000-2999) — Section 519 (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7C, 8C, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

Class D (1000-1999) — Section 519 (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7D, 8D, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

Class E (100-999) — Section 519 (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7E, 8E, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

Class F (50 - 99) — Section 519 (2, 3, 4, 5, 7F, 8F, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

#3. Amend Section 519 paragraph 5 as follows:

New animal feeding operations, new CAFO’s and waste facilities shall be set back six hundred sixty (660) feet from a property line delineating a change in ownership and three hundred thirty (330) feet form a right of way line. Additionally, the applicant shall locate the operation two thousand six hundred forty (2,640) feet from neighboring residential dwellings. The Planning Commission may recommend and/ or the Board of Adjustment may mandate setbacks greater than those required herein to further the intent of the Zoning Ordinance while protecting the public health, safety, and welfare.


Editor’s Note: All three named commissioners were contacted and given the opportunity to respond to Jensen’s letter. The responses received follow. Commissioner Joseph Healy declined to respond.

Dan Klimisch, Yankton County Commissioner

I agree that the citizens of Yankton County have waited long enough for zoning changes that will protect their safety, health and welfare. The previous county commission set the precedence of placing 2400 head hog barns 75 feet away from people’s property not once, but twice! While we can’t predict the future, it’s very likely that Yankton County will continue to see more hog barn expansion. If we don’t make the necessary zoning changes, who will be the next family to have thousands of hogs 75 feet away from them? Will it be you?

I support the proposed changes that our planning commission has been working on for the last 18 months. While no zoning ordinance is perfect, the proposed changes are a vast improvement. We must have responsible livestock growth in our community, but responsible livestock growth protects the air, land, water, and respects the rights of our neighbors. We all want economic growth and our farmers to succeed, but the challenge is finding a way to balance all these important concerns. I believe these proposed changes accomplish this necessary task.

I encourage citizens to contact me at or call me at 605-857-3799.

Thank you.

Cheri Loest, Chair Yankton County Commission

My main message while campaigning was to find common ground between all parties. There is no compromise in what Mr. Jensen is proposing. If I recall correctly, only 50% of the voters chose me on the ballot. That means 50% felt differently. They deserve consideration too.

I have always stated there were issues with Class F animal units and setbacks. Mr. Jensen’s suggestions are incomplete, contradictory and focused on only one type of animal agriculture. Changes should never be based on a narrow application as too much collateral damage is done.

Finally, Mr. Jensen served as a Yankton County Commissioner for 12 years. Repeating his words, “plenty of time.”

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