Tama County, IA – A billboard went up yesterday on highway 30 heading east near Tama, IA, calling on Rep. Dean Fisher to protect Iowan’s right to clean water and an end to unsustainable and harmful factory farms.
The billboard includes a link to a website created by Iowa CCI Action Fund that details the growing clean water and factory farm crisis in Iowa. Iowa contains over 10,000 factory farms and 767 impaired waterways. A moratorium is the first step toward creating a better food and farm system --one that works for everyone -- farmers, workers, eaters and the environment.
Last year, Rep. Dean Fisher (R-Montour), the chair of the Environmental Protection Committee, refused to assign HF 203, a bill that would institute a moratorium on new and expanding factory farms, to a sub-committee effectively blocking any discussion of it. This year HF 203 will be alive again in the Environmental Protection Committee.
“When an elected official has this much power and chooses to block legislation, it impacts all Iowans,” said Shannon Walker, a CCI Action member from Wright county, “Our demand in 2020 is simple: assign the bill to a sub-committee, let it be discussed by elected officials in both parties and let the democratic process work.”
1 in 4 Iowa counties have passed resolutions calling on the state legislature for a moratorium and/or stronger protections from the factory farm industry. And, recent polling from the Center for a Livable Future at Johns Hopkins showed that 63% of Iowans think that the state legislature should pass a proposal banning the construction of new and expanding factory farms.
“Iowans don’t like factory farms and it is time for our elected officials to respond to the needs of everyday people, not corporate ag interests,” said Ava Auen-Ryan an organizer for Iowa CCI Action. “The future of our rural communities, our water, and our climate depends on it.”
“Let this billboard be a symbol of the force of the campaign to stop factory farming in Iowa. Whether or not they want to admit it, Iowa’s elected officials have allowed Big Ag to consume our state and abuse our communities. We will no longer let that stand. It's time for Rep. Fisher to represent the people of Iowa and allow factory farm moratorium legislation to be discussed,” said Emma Schmit, an organizer for Food & Water Action.