Judge dismisses lawsuits against Wholestone Farms, City of Sioux Falls
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - A circuit court judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed against Wholestone Farms, the City of Sioux Falls, and the city council over a $500 million hog processing plant.
Judge Sandra Hoglund Hanson this week dismissed the lawsuit filed by Smart Growth Sioux Falls without prejudice.
The lawsuit stemmed from the City Council’s approval of several permits for an on-site butcher shop ahead of the November election where Sioux Falls voters decided on an ordinance, also brought forth by Smart Growth Sioux Falls, that would have banned future slaughterhouses in city limits. Voters rejected the ordinance by a 52-48% margin, largely rendering the lawsuit moot.
Wholestone opened its butcher shop nearly two weeks before the election.
Hanson previously ruled that a trial would be necessary in order to rescind permits that have already been granted by the city. She also paused permits for the project, saying that the city may have violated state law by issuing the permits ahead of next month’s election.
Wholestone plans to build the processing plant near I-229 and Benson. The company closed on the land for 170-acre project last year. According to Wholestone, construction is slated to take about 2.5 years.
Once it’s up and running, the plant will process roughly 3 million hogs annually. The facility will employ 1,000 full-time jobs and have an estimated economic impact of $1.5 billion a year.
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