Farm Journal: Separation of Church and Farmer

Brianna Schroeder was recently quoted in Farm Journal's article about a dispute between a dairy farm and nearby church camp.

Chris Bennet, from Farm Journal, writes:

Nik Niessen never expected to find himself tangled in farming controversy, accused of violating a cardinal pillar of American rights: freedom of religion.

When Niessen, 25, and his parents laid plans for County Line Dairy on family farmland in central Indiana, a church camp facility a half mile down-wind took them to court, citing a host of regulatory infractions. On Jan. 18, 2018, the Indiana Court of Appeals rejected the church’s arguments, providing precedent in future property rights versus religious rights cases.

In 2016, the Niessens began the regulatory process to build an $8-million, 1,400-head dairy, starting with two public hearings. Despite opposition from The House of Prayer (HOP) Ministries, Rush County’s Board of Zoning Appeals voted unanimously to grant the dairy a green light, contingent on five additional conditions, all met by County Line Dairy: plant shelterbelt of trees, knife in manure,  expand driveway for trucks, keep specific records for manure application and cap number of cows.

Continue reading at AgWeb.  Separation of Church and Farmer