Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Busybodies and Property Rights.

So I went to the Urban Agricultural Task force meeting Monday night.  

Sounds like they're going with just 6 chickens period -- and then if you want more you have to get permission from 60% of the neighbors w/in 100 feet of your property (of course you have to pay for a license too) so not too bad. I have a big issue with the idea that your neighbors have a say in what goes on on your own property. I still say, leave people alone and do what they want. Period. Only restrict stuff if it's actually causing damage to their neighbors use of their property (smell, and sound pollution).

Other animals aren't so fortunate. If you want to have a hoofed animal, you have to petition the city to change your zoning to Ag zoning. I explained to the task force that free people don't need permission from the government to do what they want with their own property. I'm trying to get members of the task force to change the language at least to "Farm animals over 100 pounds" to be restricted. A couple members said they'd be willing to take hoofed animals off the table if we could get some good language, so I'm trying to see what I can come up with. If anybody has any ideas please post in the comments.

Rabbits aren't fairing as well either. They're including them in the definition of a pet -- which means you can't have more then 4. Period. Luckily, tonight there was a lady from the American Rabbit Breeders association who gave a pretty convincing speech about how 4 isn't enough of a heard if you want to show them. Apparently urban 4-H groups do a lot of urban rabbit breeding, so this would pretty much ban it.

I also found out about the complaint that set this whole thing off.  Somebody was complaining about a lady who had 250 rabbits. Well, this breeder rep actually new the lady and informed the task force that they only 100, they were all indoors in a facility, and inspectors have been out their numerous times and it's very clean and well kept.  Apparently by the time humans start smelling ammonia the rabbits are already diseased and in respiratory distress. So anybody caring for rabbits would be taking care of them at a much higher standard then it could ever start interfering with a neighbors use of their property.

It really bothers me that a few busy bodies, can get the council up in arms to the point that they start banning activities for everybody just because of a few nosy neighbors.
More, as this progresses.


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