Amendment E Ruling a Sad Day for South Dakota

South Dakota's Constitutional Amendment E was ruled unconstitutional last Tuesday, August 19th, by the U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis, MO. The appellate court found the law that South Dakota voters put in place in 1998 to be in violation of the Interstate Commerce Clause. ""I'm very disappointed with this decision,"" said DRA FARM team leader, Charlie Johnson, ""but the fact remains that the voters of South Dakota have chosen family farms over corporate factory farms three times since 1974. While the 8th Circuit Appellate Court has shown total disregard for the wishes of South Dakota's citizens, I am encouraged by the knowledge of the broad support we have for this issue at home,"" said Johnson. \r\n\r\n Dakota Rural Action, the South Dakota Resources Coalition and the South Dakota Attorney Generals office were the defendants in the case. """"This is a sad day for South Dakota's environment; for our family farmers and rural business owners; and for the democratic process,"" said Luanne Napton, President of the South Dakota Resources Coalition. ""Amendment E was passed to protect family farms and the environment from the economic and environmental degradation corporate animal agriculture has inflicted on other states. Amendment E insured that anyone farming in South Dakota was personally responsible for their actions. This court ruling, if it stands, will turn South Dakota into the next North Carolina, with millions of gallons of manure running in our rivers,"" she said.\r\n\r\n Ralph Duxbury , a family farmer and DRA member from Hurley, SD added, ""With this decision, the safety net has been removed for South Dakota's communities and now only your local zoning ordinances protect you. We must maintain a voice in the local control of our livelihood and our health. We need to make sure our representatives know that the voters of this state support more protection and more local control, not less!"" he said. For more information, contact Dakota Rural Action at 697-5204. \r\n ## \r\nWestern Organization of Resource Councils