The Wisconsin Natural Resources Board approved revised rules for spreading liquid manure in the state on Wednesday.

The rules, which were developed by the state Department of Natural Resources in May 2006, were designed to provide more guidance on spreading liquid manure and prevent run-off. However, the state Senate’s Ag Committee sent the proposal back for more clarification.

Now, the revised rules go to the Legislature’s Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules. The committee has 10 days to accept, reject or ask for more changes. If the committee does not take any action the rules become law.

The biggest change to the manure-spreading rules was to eliminate a provision that required producers not to spread manure when the weather forecast included a 70 percent chance or more of a 0.5 inch or more of rain within 24 hours.

The rules apply to all farms that are required to get a DNR waste discharge permit. For dairy, that is about 700 milking cows. Some of the provisions include: six months of manure storage, a nutrient management plan, prevent spreading if the frost is more than 0.5 inches deep, adhere to setbacks from waterways and wells when spreading.

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