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Missouri lawmakers OK limits on local industrial farm rules

(AP) – Missouri lawmakers have passed a bill to block local officials from regulating industrial farms more strictly than the state does.

House lawmakers voted 103-44 Tuesday to send the measure to Gov. Mike Parson.

Industrial farms known as concentrated animal feeding operations allow for more efficient production of beef, pork, poultry, dairy and eggs. They’ve also stoked concerns about air and water pollution.

If enacted, the bill would ban counties from enacting rules on those farms that are “more stringent” than state regulations.

Backers of the change say consistent rules across the state will help family farms survive.

Critics raised concerns about loss of local control and questioned the need for change, arguing that large animal feeding operations have been successful in the state under current laws.

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