The Ottumwa Courier

Opinion

May 22, 2013

Ask for salvation now

(Continued)

Apparently, that’s also the opinion of more than 70 neighbors seeking legal counsel to help protect themselves. They are currently working with local attorney and JFAN’s legal counsel David Sykes who has teamed up with attorney Charlie Speer from Kansas City.

The Save Batavia and Eldon group has hope. Mr. Speer has a national reputation as the leading anti-factory farming attorney in the country. He has successfully protected many communities like Batavia and Eldon and currently has cases in seven other states.

Of course, it would be ideal to stop CAFOs before they are built. But the nature of Iowa law makes it more conducive to start litigation once a CAFO is up and running and the damage they cause is more evident.

Mr. Speer has a reputation of securing very high monetary awards. Mr. Sykes, too, has a successful history fighting CAFOs, working with JFAN and also as an independent legal counsel.

Save Batavia and Eldon will not back down. And they shouldn’t. To save a lot of unnecessary hassles for all involved, JFAN feels the Adam family would be wise to stop their CAFOs now and raise their hogs using traditional farming methods that don’t create harm.

Jim Rubis

president, Jefferson County Farmers & Neighbors, Inc.

Fairfield

Cemetery needs

to be maintained

On May 18, we visited Shaul Cemetery in Ottumwa, and to our disappointment, we found that the grounds had not been mowed and looked like they hadn’t been mowed for quite a long time. We spent about an hour trying to find our loved ones’ gravesites only to discover that the trees had been removed and some of the stones moved from their original places.

We spoke to the caretaker, and he assured us that they would be replaced properly. My question is, why has the cemetery not been properly taken care of? We walked through deep grass everywhere. It is my understanding that the city is taking over the perpetual care. If this is true, the department that is in charge of this task is failing to meet the expectations of all of the families that visit. I can’t believe that the residents of Ottumwa would allow such substandard conditions.

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