The Livestock Management Facilities Act protects your right as a citizen
to a safe, clean environment as well as the right of livestock farmers
to earn a living. It concludes animal agriculture is important to Illinois
economy and should be maintained, but farmers have a responsibility
to be good neighbors.
The act, which was adopted in 1996 and amended in 1998, 1999 and 2007, also
recognizes market forces are rapidly changing the livestock industry.
Farmers increasingly are having to expand their operations to remain
in business, and this trend toward expanded farms has created a need
for safeguards to protect your interests and theirs.
Act establishes requirements for the design, construction and operation
of livestock management and livestock waste-handling facilities. It
also establishes specific procedures and criteria for the siting of
such facilities and outline the public information meeting process.
Notice of Intent to Construct
The initial step in the application process is the submittal of a Notice of Intent To Construct (NOITC) a livestock management and/or waste handling facility form to the Department for review. The Notice of Intent to Construct form provides information regarding a projects location, size, type, and possible compliance with the setback provisions of the statute which are discussed below. The Department reviews the application form and, if it determines that the application meets all applicable provisions of the Livestock Management Facilities Act, issues an acknowledgement of setback compliance to the applicant. If the size and/or project type qualifies it for a possible public informational meeting, the Department sends notice to the county board and offers to schedule and conduct such a meeting. A listing of NOITCs currently under consideration by the Department can be viewed by clicking on the previous link.
Public Informational Meeting Process
A public informational meeting can be requested whenever a new livestock
management or waste-handling facility is proposed that will either:
a) house 1,000 or more animal units or b) use an earthen lagoon to handle
animal waste. The purpose of the meeting is to ensure that you receive
accurate information about the proposed facility. The Livestock Management
Facilities Act requires farmers wanting to build a new facility to file
a notice of intent to construct with the department. The filing of this
notice triggers a five-step process to review the farmers application
The Department of Agriculture will send a copy
of the notice to your county board and publish a public notice in
a local newspaper.
After receiving the notice, your county board has
30 days to request a public informational meeting about the project.
During this time, any county resident can petition the board to
request a meeting by gathering the signatures of 75 or more registered
If requested, the Department of Agriculture will
hold an informational meeting within 15 days of the boards
request. At the meeting, you will hear a description of the proposed
project from the owner or operator and have an opportunity to ask
questions. You also may present oral or written comments regarding
No later than 30 days after the meeting, your county
board is required to submit an advisory, non-binding recommendation
to the Department concerning the facilitys construction.
After this 30-day period ends, the Department has
15 days to review the application and the boards recommendation
and determine whether the proposed facility meets provisions of
the Livestock Management Facilities Act. If it finds additional
information is required to reach a decision, the Department can
request such information. In such cases, the decision will be made
after the owner of the proposed facility responds to the additional
The Livestock Management Facilities Act establishes eight siting criteria
that must be met by a new livestock management or waste-handling facility.
Because these criteria form the basis of your county boards recommendation
and have a significant role in the decision of whether or not the proposed
facility is approved, they should be addressed in your comments at the
informational meeting. Specifically, the act seeks to determine:
Whether registration and livestock waste management
plan certification requirements, if required, are met by the notice
of intent to construct.
Whether the design, location, or proposed operation
will protect the environment by being consistent with this Act.
Whether the location minimizes any incompatibility
with the surrounding areas character by being located in any
area zoned for agriculture where the county has zoning or where
the county is not zoned, the setback requirements established by
this Act are complied with.
Whether the facility is located within a 100-year
floodplain or an otherwise environmentally sensitive area (defined
as an area of karst area or with aquifer material within 5 feet
of the bottom of the livestock waste handling facility) and whether
construction standards set forth in the notice of intent to construct
are consistent with the goal of protecting the safety of the area.
Whether the owner or operator has submitted plans
for operation that minimize the likelihood of any environmental
damage to the surrounding area from spills, runoff, and leaching.
Whether odor control plans are reasonable and incorporate
reasonable or innovative odor reduction technologies given the current
state of such technologies.
Whether traffic patterns minimize the effect on
existing traffic flows.
Whether construction or modification of a new facility
is consistent with existing community growth, tourism, recreation,
or economic development or with specific projects involving community
growth, tourism, recreation, or economic development that have been
identified by government action for development or operation within
one year through compliance with applicable zoning and setback requirements
for populated areas established by this Act.
New facilities with 50 or more animal units must abide by setback requirements,
which range from one-quarter to one mile, depending upon the size of
the facility and number of adjacent homes. In addition, compost operations
at these facilities must be located at least one-quarter-mile away from
the nearest occupied residence unless that residence is on the facility's
property. The compost area also must be at least 200 feet from the nearest
potable water. If the composting site lies within a 10-year floodplain,
suitable action must be taken to protect the site from flooding.
1,000 to 6,999 animal units: From any occupied
residence, the setback distance is 1/4 mile + 220 feet for each additional
1,000 animal units over the first 1,000. From a populated area, the
setback is 1/2 mile + 440 feet for each additional 1,000 animal units
over the first 1,000.
Waste Lagoon Registration and Certification
Producers must register new or modified livestock waste lagoons with
the Department of Agriculture before construction begins. Department
officials will inspect the lagoon during construction and determine
whether modifications are needed. Once construction is complete, producers
must certify to the department that the facility meets all state requirements.
Lagoon Design Standards
Lagoon design requirements vary based on the distance from the lagoon
bottom to an aquifer. This distance determines whether a liner and groundwater
monitoring system are needed. Soil borings and the construction or installation
of liners must be conducted under the supervision of a licensed professional
engineer, who certifies that the site meets all requirements. Facilities
at which monitoring wells are required (those with an aquifer within
20 feet of the lagoon bottom) must test water samples periodically for
a variety of contaminants.
Facilities also may be required to construct a secondary berm, filter
strip, grass waterway, terrace or a combination of these structures
to further protect natural resources.
Single-stage lagoons must be designed to hold more manure than would
be produced in 270 days of operation. The lagoons cannot be operated
at less than the minimum design volume. In addition, the lagoon effluent
supply line must be below the minimum design volume level.
Non-lagoon Design Standards
Design standards also must be followed for the construction of livestock
waste handling structures other than lagoons. The standards differ depending
upon not only the type of facility, but also the type of waste it will
handle. For example, facilities constructed of concrete must meet the
strength and load requirements specified in the Midwest Plan Services
Concrete Manure Storage Handbook. In addition, their design must include
waterstops and, if the storage areas are uncovered and likely to collect
precipitation, two feet of freeboard is required.
Concrete storage structures that handle liquid waste must hold no less
than the amount of waste generated by the facility during 150 days of
operation at full capacity.
Facilities that store solid or semi-solid livestock waste, as well as
holding ponds used for temporary storage of feedlot runoff, must meet
the design requirements of the Midwest Plan Services Livestock
Waste Facilities Handbook or similar standards established by the United
States Department of Agricultures Natural Resources Conservation
Service. Solid waste stacking structures must hold no less than
the amount of waste generated by the facility during six months of operation
at full capacity, and prefabricated structures must be able to handle
enough waste for their intended use without exceeding the manufacturers
Additional requirements from the American
Society of Agricultural Engineers must be complied with in environmentally-sensitive
areas like 100-year floodplains.
The department inspects proposed new or modified lagoon sites before,
during and after construction. In addition, the department annually
inspects new or modified lagoons at facilities serving 1,000 animal
units or more for burrow holes, trees or woody vegetation, proper freeboard,
erosion, berm settling, bermtop maintenance, leaks and seepage. If problems
are found, the department can require the facility owner or operator
to take corrective action. The department's Livestock Management Facilities
Advisory Committee meets biannually to review the inspection process
and to recommend improvements.
Above Ground Waste Holding Structures
Livestock waste held in above ground structures must use odor control
techniques determined acceptable by scientific peer review and approved
by the department.
Livestock Manager Certification
Livestock facilities with 300 or more animal units must be supervised
by a certified livestock manager. Managers of facilities with 300 to
999 animal units can become certified in one of two ways: by attending
an approved training course or passing a proficiency exam. An on-line quiz option is now available. Managers
of facilities with 1,000 or more animal units must attend the training
course and pass the exam. A listing of current Certified Livestock Managers is available on-line.
Waste Management Plans
Waste management plans are required for facilities with 1,000 or more
animal units. Animal units from multiple livestock management facilities
under common ownership must be combined when determining whether or not a
facility is subject to the waste management plan requirements of the Act.
Facilities with 1,000 to 4,999 animal units must certify
to the department that they have a plan and must maintain a copy of
the plan at the facility site. Plans
for facilities with 5,000 or more animal units must be submitted to the Department
for review and approval before the facility begins operating.
The waste management plan and records
of livestock waste disposal must be kept on file for three years.
rates are to be determined by the nitrogen content of the manure and
the amount of nitrogen a crop requires based on the five-year average
yield. Assistance in the development of plans is available from the University of Illinois Extension at www.immp.uiuc.edu.
Reporting of Released Waste
Livestock waste handling facility owners or operators must report any
release of livestock waste to the Illinois
Environmental Protection Agency within 24 hours of discovering it.
Planned agronomic application of waste to cropland or pastureland is not
subject to this requirement. Releases can be reported via telephone at 800/782-7860.
Computing Animal Units
can determine the number of animal units at a facility by multiplying
the number of animals by the conversion factor. Similarly, you can determine
the number of animals you may keep and still stay within optimal animal
unit limits for your operation by dividing the desired number of animal
units by the conversion factor listed for the size and species of animal
*at facilities with continuous overflow watering
||Number of Animals
|swine over 55 lbs.
|swine under 55 lbs.
|young dairy stock
|sheep, lambs, goats
|laying hens or broilers*
|laying hens or broilers**
**at facilities with liquid manure handling systems
For more information about the Livestock Management Facilities Act and
associated rules and regulations, contact the Illinois Department of Agriculture
at 217-785-2427 (voice and TDD). or e:mail email@example.com Additional information regarding various related agricultural and horticultural regulations can be obtained at www.ezregs.uiuc.edu.
Copyright © 2001
State of Illinois Department of Agriculture
P.O. Box 19281, State Fairgrounds
Springfield, IL 62794-9281
(217) 524-6858 TTY