2017-05-25 / Letters

A solution that protects everyone is goal for development


My thanks to the members of the Wilkes County Planning Commission, headed by Mr. Kyle Brown, for allowing everyone to have the opportunity to speak their mind about the future of poultry farming in Wilkes County. I realize this meeting was more demanding than normal and not business as usual.

Almost all of the participants were sincere, courteous, and respectful of everyone else’s point of view regardless of which side of the discussion they happened to be on.

Some of the speakers were residents with long histories of having lived in Wilkes County their entire lives. We also heard from folks who have decided to make Wilkes County their home later in life, the so called new-comers, after being attracted by the slower pace of living and quality of life this area affords to its residents.

I anticipated this discussion was going to drift in the direction of assumptions being made that the concerns about future growth of the poultry industry and an increase in the number and size of chicken houses were primarily being instigated by the so called new-comers. Some of the pro-poultry industry participants made the point that chicken farming is agriculture and this is an agriculture county.

As the meeting progressed and folks got up to speak what was on their minds, I noted some of the speakers to be lifelong residents also voicing concerns about the impact this growing industry is going to have on the quality of their lives as well as their children and grandchildren.

It became clear to me that this topic has a cross section of county and city residents worried about what the future holds if growth of the poultry industry is not regulated and managed for the good of everyone.

This is not about outsiders coming in and trying to change anything. It’s really about recent and lifelong citizens wanting to protect the environment and quality of life for everyone. No one is suggesting an effort to try and take anything back that the poultry farmers already have. The concern is future development and the goal is finding a solution that protects everyone.

I am truly hoping the County Commissioners and members of the Planning Committee take their time to develop and decide on a plan that looks out for the long term good of us all.


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Very good letter Mr. Agan.

Very good letter Mr. Agan. Thanks for writing it.