Commissioners Leo Warren, Buddy Wright, John Wrenfrow and County Clerk Gary Hensley signed a resolution that Warren said accurately reflects the feelings of the vast majority of livestock-owners/producers in the county.
"Should the NAIS become fully implemented or mandatory, we feel that it would have a serious negative economic impact on our commercial livestock industry and the county in general, in addition to being a significant burden on our hobby and recreational farmers," Warren said last week.
He said the commission is fully aware that the NAIS is voluntary at this time, but activities and documents by those trying to implement the program leaves the option to mandate participation in the program if voluntary participation does not reach a satisfactory level.
"A copy of the resolution will be sent to our federal and state elected leaders. They have all indicated they support a voluntary position, and we are asking them to oppose the plan completely and take Oregon County and all of Missouri out of the picture as some other states already have done," the presiding commissioner said.
Warren said the commission is aware that some producers are already identifying their animals for marketing purposes and this is fine because it is not a government mandate.
"We believe current inspection systems have been successful in tracing and controlling animal disease. Farmers may have to bear the cost of animal identification tags and record keeping. The program opens our property and animals up to government inspection. It could give agriculture corporations data for marketing manipulation. We could suffer violations and fines for bureaucratic mistakes and non-compliance accusations," he said.
The presiding commissioner said the commission believes the program could force a lot of farmers in the county out of business because of the hassle and expense of the program. "It would greatly affect our economy in Oregon County, Missouri and across the nation," Warren said.
Warren said his office can supply the names and phone numbers of state and federal officials. "We strongly encourage everyone to contact federal and state officials to oppose the program," he said.