grandfather clause work, we added to house now yard smaller

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances (and how to change' started by humboldtchicken, May 6, 2009.

  1. humboldtchicken

    humboldtchicken Out Of The Brooder

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    May 5, 2009
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    Ok, so the grandfather clause, what is this? Where can I get info on it? We added onto house and before we add we did have fifty feet. Here's the laws here in Eureka, California...
    It is hereby a nuisance and it shall be unlawful to keep or permit to be kept upon any premises in the city:
    1. Any rabbits or poultry except racing-homing pigeons within 50 feet of any dwelling, school, church, or hospital: or,
    2. more than 200 in all rabbits or poultry, except racing-homing pigeons, and except by special permit of the Planning Commission first had and obtained, or any rooster over four months old within 50 feet of any dwelling, school, church, or hospital. This provision limiting the maximum number of favvits or poultry to 200 in all shall not be retroactive or effective as to rabbit or poultry ranches actually in operation on Jan 1, 1960, when the average number of rabbits or poultry ordinarily kept at any such establishment exceeds such number.
    Well this was long but wanted to get it all in.
    A City called Arcata which is about 10 minutes away doesnt have anything in the municapal code about poultry, only swine/cows/etc.
    No, I don't want to relocate at this time. We think we are going to relocate in a year or two but for now, any ideas about if I can use the grandfather clause because before we built on there was at least fifty feet away we could keep chickens.
     
  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I don't think you can. To be grandfathered, you would have had to had chickens before you added onto your house, IMO. Grandfathering is only for those keeping chickens before the law (or your lot) changed, I would think. Maybe someone else can comment on this.
     
  3. sred98

    sred98 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 18, 2008
    Oklahoma
    Cynthia's right on the Grandfather clause, unless you had chickens before the law changed, or you bought the property with the chickens on it, then it can't be Grandfathered in.

    I am a little unclear about whether you had the chickens before you added on, and there was 50 ft. clearance, or what? Sounds like you can have up to 200 birds on your property, and they just have to be 50 ft. from any house or building, including yours.

    Did you have the chickens before you added on? Sounds like, even if you did, you changed the boundary, so it wouldn't be grandfathered in. Grandfathering is only for the city changing the laws while you had the animals. It allows you to keep them even after they change them. It has nothing to do with what you do to the property.

    Did you not have to have a permit to add on? Seems like they would have said something then. [​IMG]

    Shelly
     
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    For some reason, I read your post and thought you did not have chickens. If you had chickens, then added on, I'd say you could possibly be grandfathered in, but that may be up to the local gov't entirely.
     
  5. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    I went and looked at your code. http://www.amlegal.com/nxt/gateway....=templates$fn=altmain-nf.htm$3.0#JD_Chapter91 It is apparent that those provisions have been in place for a long time, at least since 1997, and possibly since 1963.

    Unless you have owned the property or lived there prior to 1997 (or possibly even 1963--it's unclear exactly how the 97 code modified the 63 code), and had your poultry continuously from some date prior to the date the ordinance became effective, you have no grandfathering provisions.

    As others have already stated, grandfathering takes place when the laws are changed, removing or modifying a previously allowed provision.

    The exact protections and limitations of grandfathering vary by state and city.
     
  6. humboldtchicken

    humboldtchicken Out Of The Brooder

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    May 5, 2009
    eureka
    Ok, so I understand the "grandfather" clause now, didn't quite get it before. No the chickens were at my place in rural area but moved in with boyfriend who owns this house in Eureka (not rural, city.) I have seen chicken coops in yards here and there in Eureka. I hate to some criminal, which is the way its made out, to keep the chickens but there are also thousands of ferrets here in california that are kept undercover. MY neighbors are nice so it may not be a problem (they havn't mentioned), just trying to figure out some way to make it go "by the books." The chickens were not here before the addition to the house. Anywho, I am gonna see if there is some little loop holes I can get through, Arcata City (a nearby town that allows chickens at least 25 feet away) said there are little ways to get around, have to look into it more.
     
  7. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Although the code does not exempt your house from the 50 ft rule, chances are pretty good that they would not enforce the rule based upon distance from your home. If you put a pen/tractor right next to your house (in the backyard), centered between the properties on each side, measure from that place to your property line on each side and in the back. The add the distance to the neighbor's house and see how far of you are.
     
  8. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

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    Waterloo, Nebraska
    It mentions something about a "special permit of the Planning Commission." Maybe you can just ask for a permit.
     
  9. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    I don't think she needs a permit unless she is plannng on 200 or more birds, or a rooster.

    I have a lot of birds, but no where near that many--including babies.
     
  10. humboldtchicken

    humboldtchicken Out Of The Brooder

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    May 5, 2009
    eureka
    I spoke with a lady today who was dissapointed in the fifty foot rule who also lives in Eureka, she wanted a few chickens and is worried about the fines. I've tried to get her to help me push to lower the fifty feet to something like twenty, of course none would be nice. I prefer to not have to walk out in the pouring down rain to check on the chickens.[​IMG] Not sure if she wants to help. Anyhow, I believe the fifty feet is from any dwelling, including your own. I am not sure about a special permit, but maybe that would be possible, good idea. The neighbors have said they don't care what we do here as long as it doesn't keep them up at night so that helps. I have heard some horror stories on here about crazy neighbor problems. Anyhow, I will keep trying, today I didn't feel good so didn't make any phone calls on the whole fifty foot rule, call in morning. How have you guys found out about locals who also have a small flock, your underground chicken friends, I KNOW THERE'S SOME OF YOU OUT THERE?
     

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