An open letter to Rep. Joel Kitchens:

I was hoping to hear by now a public statement on your position regarding more cows and CAFO expansions, particularly in the highly contaminated regions on karst, such as the Town of Lincoln.

I recently read that you were “thrilled that the Clean Water Access Bill was signed into law.”

Your enthusiasm is not shared by disenfranchised residents, some with limited income, who find the costs associated with addressing water contamination that occurred through no fault of their own – clean water literally taken from their homestead due to agricultural waste.

No, these residents aren’t thrilled. Even low-end remediation methods to address water contamination is costly, and quite frankly, the costs should be borne by the polluting entity, the “cause,” the perpetrator. Let the polluters pay – NOT the taxpayer. NOT the victim.

Residents living in Kewaunee county have invested in two, three wells, only to have them turn up contaminated again in a short period of time.

Recently the Department of Revenue agreed that Kewaunee citizens living near CAFOs have a reduction of value in their home.

The further addition of cows and expansions in Kewaunee County will continue to be a detriment, resulting in the further impoverishment of our community and continued degradation of land, air, and water; carry with it severe health threats, destroyed infrastructure, plunging property values, and serious quality of life issues, and ever greater costs to the taxpayers.

Door residents are not immune to the cow count in Kewaunee County, and will feel both the impacts and externalization of the massive amounts of manure heading through the “open door” and ending up in our tributaries, streams, and Lake Michigan.

Please provide your position on more cows on karst in this northeast region of Wisconsin and the Niagara Escarpment we are inundating with manure.

Nancy Utesch

Kewaunee