My letter to our Palm Beach County Commissioners, Did you write yours?

note: you still have time to write a letter to our county commissioners. 

the next reading: called the 1st reading where they can adopt or postpone is july 26. 

Please!!! if you like what you see out here, enjoy what I do, and want to see more not less of it and others like me,  write and let them know! This zoning language outside of putting us on the books is limiting, devastating, only work in favor of the non-livestock neighbor, is cost prohibitive and will whitewash us into just another suburban neighborhood.  

email goes to all commissioners: BCC-AllCommissioners ""at"" pbcgov dot org

If you live in the ACREAGE have livestock and or want to learn more there is a meeting next monday July 9 at the ITID offices off avocado. Please attend to listen to the presentation from zoning staff . Its' possible i'm just delusional and all this really is helpful like they say. 

July 9, 2012 7:00 pm
Acreage Landowners Association
Indian Trail Improvement District
13476 61st Street North, West Palm Beach, FL

June 25, 2012

RE: livestock zoning in AR district

Dear Commissioners,

Please, postpone passing the 2nd half of the Livestock ordinance on your agenda June 28, 2012, till further consideration, or delete it altogether. 

Yes. Make it so poultry are where they obviously should be; Agriculture/livestock. How one jumps to "hobby bird breeder" for classification purposes, when the definition of agriculture; says "....eggs, honey, dairy...." is almost... comical. Eggs come from domesticated poultry. Poultry are livestock... Make it clear. But then leave it at that. Please!

Accessory and Tempororay uses- (Chapter B)  anything in here needs work or deletion.
As it stands it is limiting, burdensome, and is going backwards not forward. There are homesteads out here 20 years that have structures, and fencing, raising livestock, minding their own business, living peacefully, and the way the ordinance reads now will create cost constraints no one can afford, as well inhibit livestock care. Many are just holding on financially, by adding unnecessary language will be that nail in the coffin. There is no wording to "grandfather" in older structures. And there should be. Forcing owners to move pens, livestock, or to make pens smaller to adapt to new ordinance language is detrimental to health of animals. Smaller paddocks are more of a nuisance. This language doesn't help us like zoning is expressing. It helps the neighbor only who should realize when moving out to "The Acreage"  or " Jupiter Farms" is moving out to rural areas where livestock live. 

- "Structure" what is "permanent" regarding livestock. fencing. coops. small lean to's. pole barns?

- no front or side use? We need all our acreage 

- 400 sq. feet- what can you put in there. Not much.

- Vaccinations/licensing- livestock follow state/national agriculture regulations not PBACC.

- PBACC -Animal care and control should not be in this at all. 

- 6 on site sales. Yes. Good but why limit. Make it easier not more difficult to sell FARM livestock (and products).

Palm Beach County historically is agriculture driven. Loxahatchee (The Acreage) and other rural areas with our homesteading efforts are trying to keep it alive. Land prices don't allow for affording larger acres. The economy has most of us underwater.  It's where we can homestead affordably, raise livestock, breed, show, sell, be rural without urban encumbrances. Please stop urbanizing us, this language is the start.

I was pushed out of Miami with livestock in tow, and moved to Davie, till I was pushed out of there, and came to The Acreage about 12 years ago. Next is out of state! One that embraces the ideals of farmsteading, rural ideals, know your farmer, buy local, local sustainability, farm to table, and so on. This is not a trend, I've been living it for 8 years. 

The Florida Dept of Agriculture and Consumer Services understands this too, by starting up the  "Fresh from Florida" marketing initiative. And it is doing GREAT! 

Too bad zoning could kill all that in our county for those of us on smaller plots of land. This movement is in full swing, in our country, state and county. If you make this too difficult, burdensome, or make it harder not easier to start up or stay, or send the message that developing more land is your agenda, then what else is there?

Wouldn't it be sad to think that all that experience and sweat equity gained in THIS county is going to be used to help another county, or state, thrive.

With regards,

Josephine Milano

This is original language as it started. 
You can see why i jumped on this. 

They made a few minor changes here:
still doesn't address concerns

This is where we are at now/july 2
you must read all three together to get the full ordinance language 
as it would stand if adopted.

This language is damaging to anyone that owns livestock. We have septic systems, drain fields, well water areas and those areas are non-use areas. We have 15 ft. easements on front and backs of property, or sides, if on a canal or have double roads transecting. All this land is unusable today without this language. You can't have animals on septic tanks. 

Livestock owners aren't horse owners. I've been both. Livestock owners add, delete, move as the needs arise for our goats, pigs, chickens, etc... As they come, go, grow.  Kid pens, coops, cooping chicks and incubator areas, we have small milk rooms, feed rooms, utility sheds. birthing pens, buck pens, shade shelters. We use all those and more. And unless you are bonafide agriculture, all of it would need to be permitted... Its costly and limiting to the average hobby breeder. Not everyone takes it to the level of bonafide agriculture. Not everyone wants to, or can, and they shouldn't have to be considered agriculture. 

Look at the last lines of the newest language. " It shall not be utilized in a manner that creates a nuisance for adjacent property owners such as containing animals in a limited area next to the property line."  REALLY?  exactly where should they be put? can't have them on 45,000 square feet of my land already (septic, well, easements, etc) the perimeters of the property are all that are left after keeping free the well water areas. and septic areas and small home areas for personal home use. (pool, patio etc). This language is damaging to good livestock management. Its only helping the complainer the ability to complain more. This language opens a door of interpretation they shouldn't have. NOT OUT HERE. 

Allowing 6 onsite sales? unenforceable so why is it in there? no limits, allow it and leave it alone. Again the door is now open for interpretation. I don't like going to auction. Nor do I ever recommend it for hobby breeders. Here this language is pretty much forcing this. When you purchase your piggy you want to see the parents, the care, the farm, etc. You don't want to purchase any animal from an auction. or worse side street. Which this language if they ever intend to add to is forcing this to start. THis does NOT promote proper ownership and best care practices. Part of going to the farm is your ability to see best management practices in action or not. 

This also doesn't address the homeowners who have lived here decades and decades who never need permits. They didn't need to historically in the past. I'm not sure when every little thing needs permitting but its been only in the last decade or less... Pole barns with no lighting, no concrete and no water were not considered permanent structures. Here in this new language they are. And would need to be pulled down. Many homeowners were the ONLY ones on their street for decades. And put up structures at the fence line. 

I could go on on and on with other points why this language is not "helping us" ... this isn't good for us out here. It isn't good for Palm Beach County who touts us as agriculture friendly. This isn't good for the animals. The only one this is good for is the mcmansion owners who can't do anything more on the property as the house takes all of it, and really are only peppered through our area. I bet out of 10,000 homes out here, less then 20% are of the mcmansion types (developers gone amuck). While the other 80% out here are dual purpose, dual use. Homes like mine- small and well suited to work with the land rather then just sit on top of it.

I'll stop now. You decide. You tell me if i'm just a tad delusional and really all this is going to help us livestock owners. Or kill this area altogether albeit a few chickens, or a pig. or the lone goat keeping the horse company! 

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