An attorney representing opponents of the regulations says he expects the board to pass a new regulation before a state-wide ban on county-level regulations of agricultural operations takes effect at the end of August.

The Cooper County Public Health Board rescinded its disputed CAFO regulation Thursday night.

The board wanted to re-evaluate it’s position and didn’t see the point in having both sides continue paying to litigate the issue, said Stephen Jeffery, the attorney representing the health board in a lawsuit over the regulation.

Another regulation is not being considered at this time, he said. A statewide ban on county-level regulations on agricultural operations goes into effect on Aug. 28, so there isn’t much time to pass another, Jeffery said.

Health Board members voted 4-0 in favor of rescinding the regulation Thursday. Jeffery asked a judge Friday to dismiss counts of a lawsuit seeking to overturn the regulation, but the opposing lawyer doesn’t believe it’s the end.

Brent Haden, an attorney representing a group of 100 farmers and landowners who have been suing to have the regulation overturned, said he expects the health board to pass another regulation before Aug. 28 that will be modeled on the regulation Howard County voters approved in 2018.

The health board is being “sneaky and double-tongued” and rescinded the original regulation to end the injunction Presiding 18th Judicial Circuit Judge Robert Koffman placed when Haden’s clients first sued last October, the attorney said.

Jeffery filed a motion Friday asking Koffman to end his injunction on the rescinded regulation and dismiss each count of the lawsuit regarding the regulation. The other counts deal with allegations the board violated the Missouri Sunshine Laws.

Haden would request another injunction if the board passes another regulation, he said.

“It’s a waste of my client’s money and the county’s money, some of which is my clients’ money,” Haden said.

Haden would challenge a new regulation on the same grounds he’s been arguing the original should be overturned. The health board hasn’t shown that its regulation has any positive effect on human health, so it overreached its authority, he said.

Once Senate Bill 391 goes into effect on Aug. 28, he would also argue that law wipes out any county-level CAFO regulation, he said.

The Howard County regulation, which the Moniteau County Health Board has also considered adopting, looks attractive to CAFO opponents because it’s based on a regulation the Linn County Commission passed in 1997 that survived a legal challenge, Haden said.

That regulation is also more strict than the one the Cooper County Health Board rescinded yesterday, Haden said. The main restriction of the Cooper County regulation required anyone applying manure from a CAFO onto their land to develop a detailed nutrient management plan like the plans CAFO operators are required to have to show how they will keep animal waste from polluting water. It also required them to knife the manure into the soil rather than applying it on top.

The Howard County regulation requires any operation with more than 300 animal units — equal to 1 beef cow or 2.5 hogs over 55 pounds — to get a permit from the county in addition to the permits required by the Department of Natural Resources. It also imposes setback requirements on anyone spreading manure from a CAFO, and requires surety bonds for manure storage systems.