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Published July 21, 2010, 11:38 AM

Bomaz Farms seeks expansion, upgrade

Bomaz Farms, a dairy operation in the Town of Pleasant Valley, is hoping to upgrade their facility in the near future.

Bomaz Farms, a dairy operation in the Town of Pleasant Valley, is hoping to upgrade their facility in the near future.

The upgrade will include a modest increase in animals to approximately 1,400 units, from about 1,300.

But before that can happen they need to be approved for a Wisconsin Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit.

Through the WPDES permit program, the Department of Natural Resources regulates municipal, industrial and animal waste operations discharging water to surface or groundwater. Each permit contains monitoring, reporting and operational requirements needed to ensure protection of Wisconsin’s water resources, according to the DNR website.

Parkers Creek and the Kinnickinnic Watershed receive water from Bomaz Farms, located at 426 165th St., Hammond.

Along with increasing animal units, plans call for a new lagoon and digester. Those were approved by the DNR in March 2010.

The facility will have more than the 180 days required manure storage, according to a notice from the DNR. Manure will be landspread on about 1,200 acres in accordance with an approved nutrition management plan.

The DNR has tentatively decided that the WPDES plan should be issued for the new discharge but public comments are welcome.

People who wish to comment on or object to the proposed permit action, or request a public hearing, may write to Robert Rohland, DNR, Black River Service Center, 910 Highway 54 East, Black River Falls, WI 54615, call 715-284-1429 or e-mail robert.rohland@wis

All comments or suggestions received by 4:30 p.m. Saturday, July 24, will be considered along with other information on file in making a final decision regarding the permit. Anyone providing comments in response to this public notice will receive a notification of the department final decision.

Where designated as a reviewable surface water discharge permit, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is allowed up to 90 days to submit comments or objections regarding this permit determination. If no comments are received on the proposed permit from anyone, including the U.S. EPA, the permit will be issued as proposed.

Bomaz Farms is owned by brothers Bob and Greg Zwald and their wives Kay and Irma, according to their website. They currently milk about 600 cows and run approximately 1,200 acres.

The operation currently has about 1,300 animal units from a mix of dairy cows, heifers and calves, according to Bob Rohland of the DNR. An animal unit is based on a scale that says there is one unit for a 1,000 pound steer; a scale for other weights and animals.