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Julie Fanselow

Here's the info on contacting the National Trust from ICARE:

National Trust for Historic Preservation
Office of Communication/11 Most Endangered
1785 Massachussetts Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20036.

"Those letters probably need to be out by today or tomorrow though, because we're already past the deadline and have been given an extension so long as the materials reach them by friday.

"If some people prefer to send emails, they can do that as well (though letters are preferable). The email address is: 11most@NTHP.org

The Nickel-Plated JA

I'm confused though -- how does building a new feedlot a mile away, in an area already rich in dairies, specifically affect the Minidoka Internment?

This brings back an unusual memory from high school though: When Boise Towne Square mall opened, there were onion-fed sheep being raised across the street. Needless to say, the stench didn't deter the shoppers much.

Alma Hasse

If Jerome Co. allows this CAFO to be sited here, the Monument would be downwind. Visitor's experiences will be DESTROYED by odor, flies, manure applications, possible ground water contamination, the constant traffic of a 24 hr. 365 day operation. Let's compare apples to apples ... the analogy of the onion fed sheep and the mall cannot even begin to compare. First of all, were there close to 100,000 sheep in that field? Because that's the equivalent number of sheep to cows. Secondly, the mall is an INDOOR shopping experience. Visitors to the monument will be out of doors for the great majority of their visit, and therefore be subject to whatever odor / gasses / insects / traffic noise / bawling cattle noise / light pollution, the list goes on and on. The purpose of having Minidoka dedicated as a National Monument was to preserve a part of history where people could go to reflect upon great civil rights injustices done to citizens of Japanese-American descent. And, hopefully, by revisiting history, never, ever, repeating it. However, Mr. Art Brown, the Planning & Zoning Administrator for Jerome County, is indeed repeating history by not allowing former internees to be heard as part of this public hearing process. Following is a letter in support of ICARE's nomination of Minidoka to the National Trust for Historic Preservation's 11 Most Endangered Sites list for 2007, which ever so eloquently sums up the reasons NO CAFO should EVER be allowed this near the monument:

We are writing to support Minidoka Internment National Monument to the National Trust for Historic Preservation's most endangered list.

The 72 acre National Monument is in imminent danger of being adversely affected by a massive feedlot and dairy being placed nearby the historic site. An additional 128 acres of land recently purchased and adjacent to the Monument protects additional Monument land and a local Farm-in-a-Day site, which tells the local story of those who settled the land after the camp was closed. Both the Monument and Farm-in-a-Day sites will be adversely affected by 18,500 dairy cows and their waste.

Minidoka Internment National Monument is in Jerome County and three County Commissioners will decide whether 18,500 or more dairy cows will be adjacent to Minidoka. They have said they will only recognize the input of those who live within a mile of the massive dairy. They discount recent Congressional funding approval to use all former internment sites for educational purposes. They discount the opinions of those, nationwide, who are protesting the massive feedlot. While local decisions are preferred, our environment knows no boundaries.

So much of the site has already been lost and to create oppressive odors, insects, manure from 18,500 dairy cows right next to the few remnants that remain, is unconscionable. We are just learning the adverse effects of what is proposed. More independent studies are needed, or at least a moratorium on massive operations of this nature, may provide some time to collect relevant information on its effect on the soil, nearby canal, and the air we breathe.

A rock chimney and remnant of a waiting room still stands at the entrance to Minidoka. At one time there were over 9.400 persons of Japanese descent and over 600 barrack style buildings there. "Camp" land which used to have buildings is now farmland. A rock garden, cobblestones of a walkway, slab remnants of buildings, still exist Cattle graze on what once was the camp dump..

The National Park Service, who is now in charge, has spent the past 5 years gathering public input and writing a Management Plan, which was just released in November. They hope to recreate one block of 12 barrack buildings, one central mess hall and latrine/shower/laundry building to use for educational purposes. All will be meaningless, if no one wants to visit the site due to oppressive odors, insects, pollution, manure on roadways, from a 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, huge operation!

The remnants of the land do have a significance since people still do come to visit the site, to pay their respects to those who were incarcerated there and to discuss how and why such a camp, as Minidoka, ever happened in America. We've taken bus tour groups from other states to the Minidoka site. Individuals and tours have come on the Minidoka Pilgrimage. People have come from all over - Washington D.C., Hawaii, Arizona to attend Elderhostel courses and tour the Minidoka Monument. Students from all grade levels in schools, classes of college students have come to learn and discuss why our government incarcerated its own citizens here.

More and more people are realizing that the lessons of Minidoka have national, and timeless, significance. Sun Valley Center for the Arts made the internment and the holocaust a topic of their series of multidisciplinary programs titled "The Gaze of Hate". For the past 5 years, Governor Kempthorne of Idaho declared Feb 19 to be a Day of Remembrance to honor those who were incarcerated, to honor those who fought in the United States Army even though their parents and relatives were incarcerated in "camps", such as Minidoka, and to create a dialogue about tolerance in times of national emergency and war.

Minidoka was part of our local, state and national history, but unless care is taken to let people remember what happened there, with dignity, they won't return. Another opportunity will be lost to preserve our history and educate those who follow.

We, who have worked to preserve Minidoka (then Minidoka War Relocation Center, now Minidoka Internment National Monument), for years, and see it's historical value, appreciate any help the National Trust for Historic Preservation can provide.

Alma Hasse, Founder
ICARE - Idaho Concerned Area Residents for the Environment

Claudia Lee Haynes

It's not just Phosphorous, it's nitrates, hormones, pharmaceuticals, methamphetamine, pathogens, bacteria, viruses and E-coli OH157, ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, fecal dust, these all come from CAFOs and our DEQ, EPA, and ISDA are doing nothing to stop this contamination. Ask anyone who lives near a CAFO as I do, 4000 cows to the west, and 8000 cows to the east. Our Water, Air, and Quality of Life
are all being effected. Now they want a dairy near a monument. All of this contamination is
documented. All the state agencies have the data, they all have the readings on wells, and air pollution, they are not protecting the health of the public. The State agencies are just letting it all happen. There are laws on the books that can be enforce but they are not being enforced. Department of Ag. has jurisdiction over this contamination but will not fine,
close, or enforce what the violators are doing. Would you want increased nitrates in your well, would you want your children to breath fecal dust?
Sincerely, Claudia Lee Haynes

Dean and Eden Dimond

We have firsthand knowledge...we live right by the proposed CAFO site and own a family farm next to the Minidoka Monument. Where many parts of our county have too many cows, this end has been spared (so far) from the over concentration of cattle. Right now we enjoy fresh air, quiet evenings and only small annoying gnats along the Northside canal that runs by the monument. We have a young family and our three children love their playground that is bordering the proposed site. If this site is approved we have been told by physicans and dairymen that we will have to move. The risks to our children's young developing bodies will be too great and we cannot stay here. With our home and our source of income (farm) here we are doing what we can to protect our lifestyle and our neighbors. We count the monument as a good neighbor and have enjoyed seeing groups come and enjoy their visits. We know this would end. Visitors would share the only small country road in and out with enough equipment to feed and clean-up after 18,555 animals, as manure trucks go back and forth on the same road the visiting cars pick-up what is dropped and carry the disgusting smell where ever they go. If we want this to continue to be a nice environment for homes and a national monument we need to actively oppose this CAFO.

Julie Fanselow

Well, NPJA, I guess this answers your question!

From my experiences in the Magic Valley, I definitely believe that Jerome County already has more than its share of CAFOs. And instead of being "just one more," this one in particular would have more negative impacts than usual due to its proximity to the monument.

I hope you folks get to testify before the commissioners and that they take your concerns seriously.

Diana Rowe Pauls

Just about anybody driving around Magic Valley has experienced the "OMG" moment as the stench invades your vehicle at certain locations (there is one particular spot on the highway between Jerome and TF). My own family has a little routine where the kids tease each other about who "tooted" in the car.

Now... just imagine LIVING in that stench. Imagine having a picnic or backyard BBQ. Imagine taking a stroll in the evening.

My father-in-law was born and raised on his farm. His father settled there in the early 1900s. Almost one hundred years of living on this land... farming, raising a family, and now in their golden years (still farming though), they are forced to deal with a nearby dairy owned by a less-than-considerate family. This dairy only has about 300 cows (maybe more, but not more than 500, I don't think) and the neighbors are already suffering. The increase in flies and the stink floating on the evening breeze are the two main impacts. This dairy has a huge pond of poop next to it and has had multiple (30? 40?) citations over the past few years.

But NOW they want to build an addition to this dairy to add 3000 cows... that's TEN times as many as they have now. There are lawyers, threats, fighting, anger, etc. among the dairy people and the neighbors. People have sold their homes (at a loss) because of the stench and flies. And these aren't "city folk" who "just don't understand ag or rural living". These are people who have lived here ALL OF THEIR LIVES.

And to top it off, this dairy is located RIGHT ABOVE the place where the aquifer is located as it flows to the Snake. Yum, yum.

All Idahoans whether living in Sandpoint or Boise or wherever should visit a mega-dairy and THEN contact their legislators to try to save our state from becoming the state best known for cow poop rather than potatoes.

The Nickel-Plated JA

Yes, I have been educated -- I'm not much up on many agribusiness issues, and I'll be the first one to admit it. A little further reading, and I learned that more than 99.8% of the dairies in Wisconsin are NOT CAFOs. And wasn't it the California dairy producers a couple years ago who did the "Better milk comes from happy cows" spots? It seems our state's penchant for a lax regulatory environment may be taken advantage of here by corporate agriculture, and I have a sneaking suspicion their end-products wind up undercutting other producers down the entire supply-chain.

lee halper

To Nickle Plated JA who asks how this feedlot will affect the monument when there are already cafos in the area. This area is not inundated like the western part of the county and there is a thing called Cumulative Effect and the straw that broke the camels back. Remember gym class where if you're the only one in the locker room, the air was tolerable, but when the football team came in from practice it became BO city. Same thing with cafos, they cumulatively effect the air and 18,000 animals added to the existing ones will break the camels back. Besides that, official reports already cite that Jerome County is over the limit for any sustainable farming because the cafos are killing the fields, polluting the groundwater and creating a permanent stink in the air with toxic compounds. So, should we put two football squads in the same locker room? As to the sheep and the onions. They aren't there anymore, are they and are onions as offensive, to say nothing of the toxicity, as shit?

Dean Dimond

Imagine driving down a nice country road it in is the spring, a cool breeze blows as you look forward to a nice memorable time visiting a national monument. You slow down as you swerve to miss a huge pile of cow manure in the road and hit the potholes on the opposite side from the overloaded manure trucks as they haul their "treasure" as the frost weakens the roadway. You do this a few more times as you reach the monument site and I guess this is okay, car washes need business too. You are then welcomed and find out it is your lucky day and the LCO decided to pump their manure pond and the lovely fecal fountain can be seen as you take note in the fact that you are grateful you have not had your lunch yet. Although the staff is friendly and the monument is interesting you are ready to leave for an early lunch as your car is realined and hosed off. You ponder during the ride home as to just why Idaho is famous for their poatoes. Thank you for your visit please come again soon.

artemisia

Idaho is quickly becoming the cowpit of the Nation. It is disgusting - nothing more exemplifies the lunacy of this state than its public lands livestock and CAFO on run amok world view.

Neighbor

The Big Sky hearing just got postponed again. The applicant withdrew his application. His lawyer says they will resubmit it within weeks. Let's hope the Jerome CC make him reapply. Let's hope, even more, the applicant wises up and thinks of the neighbors, county, and National Monument and drops the case. What do you think is more important money or doing the right thing?

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