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Hendricks County Homeowners Wanted Relief From the Smell of 8,000 Neighboring Hogs; Indiana Court Weighs in

A decision released this week by the Indiana Court of Appeals will make it harder for rural residents to protect their property, the lawyer for the plaintiffs told IndyStar.

Two Hendricks County couples living next to an 8,000-hog operation allege that the odors and air emissions from the concentrated animal feeding operation, or CAFO, have caused harm to the plaintiffs. It also challenges the constitutionality of Indiana's Right to Farm statute.

The Indiana Court of Appeals made its decision on Monday, wherein it sided with defendants and affirmed the trial court's ruling.

The court reasoned that the Hendricks County homeowners were barred from bringing their legal suit under the Right to Farm Act because the land had been farmed for decades.

"[T]he record clearly establishes that the Plaintiffs’ non-farming use of their properties began well after 1941. The Lannons built their non-farming residence in 1971, and the Himsel Plaintiffs began using their home as a non-farming residence in 2000 after deciding to retire and sell most of their acreage," the decision said.

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