West Tisbury considers new regulations on burying cattle

West Tisbury is considering new regulations on the burial of cattle for reasons of public health and environmental protection. – Eunki Seonwoo

West Tisbury Board of Health began discussions on the potential implementation of new cattle burial regulations at a Zoom meeting on Thursday.

West Tisbury health worker Omar Johson said the proposed regulations were “taken directly” from the University of Massachusetts Amherst extension. best practices in livestock disposal. Best Practices identify methods of burying livestock that prevent disease from spreading to humans and animals from the carcass, and prevent pollution of air, soil and groundwater.

Johnson and West Tisbury Conservation President Maria McFarlands said they couldn’t find other towns in Massachusetts with this type of cattle burial regulations.

“I’m in favor of doing this,” said Jessica Miller, board member of health. However, Miller said the board should check with lawyers to see if they would have the authority to enforce this new rule if implemented.

“I will not pass it at all until we remove some regulations from the board,” West Tisbury Board of Health Chairman Tim Barnett said. “We have enough rules like that. I don’t want to pile up anymore. I fundamentally agree with that, but there are too many regulations, misconceptions and misuse of the rules. I don’t want that anymore.

Barnett said he was particularly concerned about animal health in general. He had recently received a complaint about the attitude of the person performing the chicken inspections, which are carried out by Johnson and animal control officer Anthony Cordray.

Johnson said he was very careful with the way he treated people and hadn’t received a lot of complaints. Johnson said the complaint was a personnel issue rather than a regulatory issue.

“A lot of regulations are in place for reasons, necessary reasons,” Johnson said. “I will honor your request not to pass it until we have further discussed our current regulations, of which there are many. “


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