QUINCY -- Dozens of residents crowded into the Adams County Courthouse boardroom Wednesday night for a more than three-hour public meeting on a proposed swine facility in Columbus Township.
Adams County Board Chairman Les Post said concerns focused on the odor that would emanate from the facility and possible road improvements it might require.
"Columbus Township is concerned it may have to spend money it doesn't have to upgrade the roads," Post said. "There were good questions and comments, and both sides were very respectful."
The proposed facility, which would be known as Gin Ridge, would be 2.3 miles northeast of Columbus in central Adams County. The facility would be owned and operated by Pike Pigs Systems, based in Pittsfield. The Herald-Whig's news-gathering partners at WGEM reported that the facility would be a breed-to-wean farm with about 3,000 sows producing about 65,000 pigs a year for other owner-producers.
Post said such facilities generally come with positives and negatives.
"The odor could, depending on how close you are, have a negative impact," he said, "but it would, hopefully, provide nine people with jobs and bring tax dollars into the school district and the township."
Pike Pigs Systems General Manager John McIntire said the facility would bring in about $3,000 in revenue for Columbus Township, WGEM reported.
"It will take about 3,700 tons of feed a year, which will be produced locally by a co-op that makes the feed," McIntire said.
At its July 10 meeting, the Adams County Board will take a nonbinding vote on whether Pike Pigs Systems has fulfilled eight requirements -- including whether odor control plans are reasonable and whether predicted traffic patterns minimize the effect on existing traffic flows -- that must be met before the project can proceed. Post said the nonbinding vote will essentially be an advisory vote for the Illinois Department of Agriculture to consider. The department will make the final decision on the facility within 15 days of the County Board vote.