Greg Slipher, INFB livestock development specialist, says it’s not enough to simply know how zoning works.
“It’s important for our members to be engaged in the zoning and planning process,” Slipher said. “Getting involved and staying in the loop will help them identify potential zoning issues before they arise.”
Slipher recommends that county Farm Bureau members attend meetings of the plan commission and board of zoning appeals. If members want to be more involved, Slipher said they can explore how to be appointed to the plan commission or BZA.
County Farm Bureau board members might also consider inviting the plan commission and BZA to a board meeting on an annual basis, offering to be a source of information for the plan commission and BZA, and inviting INFB staff to hold a review of the county’s current zoning ordinances.
In counties that don’t have county-wide zoning, Slipher said county Farm Bureaus must lead the discussion and education efforts to explore the merits of zoning.
“Agriculture interests are important to the acceptance or rejection of zoning in a county,” Slipher said. He added that those involved in agriculture should realize they may be the voting minority in the county if zoning is being advocated by non-agriculture interests.