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Mike, Environmental Manager, Right to Farm Program
The Right to Farm (RTF) program within the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) responds to nuisance complaints involving farms and will assess a farm operation at a farmer's request. Program staff evaluate farm activities to decide whether a farm is following the Generally Accepted Agricultural and Management Practices (GAAMPs). Staff are also available to answer any questions or participate in outreach activities to help farmers, neighbors, and local government officials understand the RTF Act.
As the RTF Program manager, Mike has statewide responsibility for the management of the Michigan Right to Farm (RTF) Act, including environmental complaint response, site selection for new and expanding livestock facilities, and the annual review process for the Generally Accepted Agricultural and Management Practice (GAAMPs). Mike provides oversight for MDARD's role in education and technical assistance in Michigan's Biosolids Land-application Program; orchestrates MDARD’s Spill Response Program; supervises and directs the activities of Right to Farm Program staff; and makes technical decisions and interpretations, directly impacting Michigan's agriculture industry.
Mike and his team provide an outlet for community members to voice their concerns regarding agricultural nuisance conditions, while providing Michigan’s commercial agriculture businesses the framework to be protected from nuisance litigation.
For Mike, the best part his job is absolutely the people. He takes great pride in getting to work with the extraordinary groups and individuals who make up MDARD and the department’s external partners.