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Youngstown zoning panel rejects small livestock in city



Published: Wed, December 19, 2012 @ 12:09 a.m.

By David Skolnick

skolnick@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

Cock-a-doodle-don’t.

The city planning commission voted Tuesday to recommend approval of a new redevelopment and zoning plan without changing language on small livestock and bees in urban areas.

Tammy Thomas, co-chairwoman of the Mahoning Valley Food Policy Council; Sophia Buggs, who has a farm on the city’s South Side; and Paul Hagman, a downtown architect; had urged the change.

But the commission voted 5-0 on the plan without the livestock-and-bees waiver. City council has the final say on adopting the plan.

For those who want livestock — goats, chickens, ducks and rabbits, for examples — or bees, permission is needed from the health department, the planning commission and city council, with the latter two having public hearings, before getting a permit.

The proposed code earlier this year streamlined the section on small livestock and excluded roosters as a nuisance.

But that changed after the planning commission revisited the proposal and decided to continue requiring council approval on a case-by-case basis.

“If there were chickens next door to my house, I would find that very disruptive to my life,” said Law Director Anthony Farris, a planning commission member. “You’re underplaying the negative. I think people would want to move because of chickens next door.”

He added that “there are kooks who will get chickens” for no reason.

Thomas, Buggs and Hagman proposed restrictions on small livestock and bees. Among their proposals are one hen or duck for every 1,000 square feet of property, up to eight animals; up to two other small livestock on a parcel containing at least 5,000 square feet for each animal; and up to two beehives on parcels containing at least 2,000 square feet for each hive.

“We want to do this with guidelines,” Thomas said. “There is some interest from the community supporting this.”

There are those in the community who want to buy fresh eggs and honey locally, she said.

“I don’t think we’re asking for anything unreasonable,” Hagman said. “We have a limit. It opens the window a crack, but it’s not allowing a free-for-all for livestock.”

Buggs said her eight-lot property has dilapidated parcels on either side.

“Can I have one chicken and one beehive?” she asked.

That will now be up to city council to decide.


Comments

1UticaShale(850 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

Yes, City council is well educated in farming.

O Youngstown when will you shed your inept leaders?

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2Petunia(27 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

That's ironic. City Council already has 7 turkeys.

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3uselesseater(229 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

Cities are places people use to live in.

IN places like Ytown, re-naturing will be inevitable, code or no code.

Dead weight in charge needs to get with it.

Shame when we have the law director making up fictional stories of kooks with chickens. Sociopath.

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4Petunia(27 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

All they need to do is set a reasonable restricted area around the animals and call it a day. Cleveland has livestock in the Ohio City area which is practically downtown. I'm with the Boston Market cows, "Eat Mor Chiken".

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5DwightK(1236 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

Or they could move to one of the surrounding farming communities and raise chickens and bees where such activities are zoned.

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6Ianacek(887 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

7 or 8 chickens can make a bit of noise for neighbors on a city lot & not everyone wants to be awoken by a rooster at daybreak .

Distance from neighbors is more important than a rule such as 5000 sq ft per animal .

Council should have been more accomodating on beehives though , as neighbor nuisance is mainly related to poor hive management & hive placement & bee flight path interruption. Colony collapse syndrome is a real problem everywhere & hives in urban areas are reported to thrive better than rural hives, perhaps because fewer pesticides are used . Other cities are relaxing their beehive rules .

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7peggygurney(391 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

They weren't asking for roosters, they were asking for chickens, and small livestock.

As for Mr. Farris, that's a pretty ignorant statement coming from supposedly intelligent man.

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8HOWDYNABOR(5 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

Wise move to ban them all! Look at the fiasco that happened when Penelope came to town on her first date.

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9hmm(179 comments)posted 1 year, 7 months ago

I have 15000 sq feet of adjoining city lots that I would love to have fresh vegetables and have fresh eggs BTW no one lives in or around me because the property is abandoned or empty and overgrown .... City council be forward thinking ......The south and east side are reverting back to green fields ......allow REGULATED farming for those whom pay property taxes on the lots ... Chickens don't crow and honey bees are needed for pollination ...... who knows maybe pyatt st could come back after awhile .....

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