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Lawmakers back penalties over farm lawsuits

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An Indiana Senate committee has endorsed a bill that would require penalties against anyone whom a judge decides has filed a frivolous lawsuit against a livestock farm.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 6-3 Wednesday in favor of the bill that would change current law giving judges discretion on whether to order the person filing a frivolous lawsuit to pay the farm's court costs and attorney fees.

Supporters of that change say judges are often reluctant to order such penalties against those filing nuisance lawsuits.

Environmentalists argue that such a change will have a "chilling effect" on those with legitimate complaints against sprawling, factory-style livestock farms. They say that Indiana already has a strong law protecting the property rights of farmers.

The bill now goes to the full Senate.

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  • Intimidation Tactic
    This law is not intended to protect the family farmer, but to intimidate of large, factory farming operations who suffer from unnecessary stench, health problems, air and water pollution. Indiana already has laws in place protecting against frivolous litigation.
  • What a surpise
    This is the latest stab at "tort reform" by those in support of corporate interests over
    legitimate interests of neighbors, or anyone with a concern about water quality or safety downstream from these operations. Reducing options for relief from legitimate injury is
    now a strategy by agribusiness to bully their
    way into places they aren't wanted.

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  1. In reality, Lilly is maintaining profit by cutting costs such as Indiana/US citizen IT workers by a significant amount with their Tata Indian consulting connection, increasing Indian H1B's at Lillys Indiana locations significantly and offshoring to India high paying Indiana jobs to cut costs and increase profit at the expense of U.S. workers.

  2. I think perhaps there is legal precedence here in that the laws were intended for family farms, not pig processing plants on a huge scale. There has to be a way to squash this judges judgment and overrule her dumb judgement. Perhaps she should be required to live in one of those neighbors houses for a month next to the farm to see how she likes it. She is there to protect the people, not the corporations.

  3. http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/engineer/facts/03-111.htm Corporate farms are not farms, they are indeed factories on a huge scale. The amount of waste and unhealthy smells are environmentally unsafe. If they want to do this, they should be forced to buy a boundary around their farm at a premium price to the homeowners and landowners that have to eat, sleep, and live in a cesspool of pig smells. Imagine living in a house that smells like a restroom all the time. Does the state really believe they should take the side of these corporate farms and not protect Indiana citizens. Perhaps justifiable they should force all the management of the farms to live on the farm itself and not live probably far away from there. Would be interesting to investigate the housing locations of those working at and managing the corporate farms.

  4. downtown in the same area as O'malia's. 350 E New York. Not sure that another one could survive. I agree a Target is needed d'town. Downtown Philly even had a 3 story Kmart for its downtown residents.

  5. Indy-area residents... most of you have no idea how AMAZING Aurelio's is. South of Chicago was a cool pizza place... but it pales in comparison to the heavenly thin crust Aurelio's pizza. Their deep dish is pretty good too. My waistline is expanding just thinking about this!

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