Richard Mays, the Heber Springs lawyer, tells me that the C and H Hog Farm at Mount Judea has relented and will cooperate with a plan to do drilling to test whether hog waste from the factory feeding operation is leaking into the Buffalo River watershed.

Mays received a copy of a letter from the Department of Environmental Quality, dated Wednesday, that confirmed the farm had authorized access to the property for drilling as outlined in a compromise agreement that would include an independent monitor. The drilling will begin Sept. 19, if a driller is available.

We reported last week that, despite an apparent agreement on monitoring, the hog farm was resisting access. As a result ADEQ began a review of the farm’s permit to operate because it is supposed to allow access to regulators. Once the drilling study is conducted, the letter said, that proceeding will become moot.