In times of crisis, it’s always nice to find strength and understanding from people especially those in your community. In an emergency situation, it is imperative. It seems to me that the County Commissioners, at least a few, understand the position of the Great Bend Coop and the quandary they are in due to the record yields of grain they are having to manage this year but I do not understand the position of the zoning board. So it’s okay to pour the grain on the ground but not to protect it from the forces of nature without a zoning change process? What? In order for the Coop to manage their storage shortage, they have arranged an agreement to lease 13 acres of land not surrounded by a housing development, met with the planning commission and county commissioners, agreed to compensation for possible extra road wear and tear and in order to avoid grain deterioration, they need to build movable/temporary bunks. So we had one person express concerns about the increased noise and truck traffic? Bet that didn’t come from a farmer in the area who depends on the Coop to buy their grain and magically store it somewhere until they can market it on down the line.
Mother Nature doesn’t allow for harvest convenience times and there isn’t a mathematical equation factored in to allow for a specific amount of grain limited to stay within the storage limits of any facility.
Harvest is here and the grains are overfilling the elevator’s capacities. When you have a problem right now, sometimes it has to be
solved right now and are not allowed the benefit of timely process.
Would it be better for the Coop to tell the farmers they can’t take the grain so the farmers can just watch it rot in the fields? What choices do they have? They have no other options except to pile it on the ground and that is by no means an ideal situation for the Coop as they are the ones who will have to deal with deterioration problems as well as the added expense of preserving the grains for market. This is definitely a time for compassionate thinking and deductive reasoning.
This is when you depend on your representatives and administrators to unite and work together to solve a dilemma that affects the community as a whole because it does. It matters a lot. The Coop buys the grain and puts the money in the farmer’s pockets so that they in turn can continue to invest in their community as well.
I think the Coop has shown great fortitude and put forth a great effort to continue to provide exceptional service to their customers and comply with all the necessary bureaucratic requirements to the best of their ability. I hope the bureaucrats will do the same. This is not a time to whip out a rule book and recite the words, this is a time to work together and solve a problem probably not listed in the rule book.
Bill and Marti Conner