Silence in the Zoning laws?

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances (and how to change' started by gbeauvin, May 15, 2011.

  1. gbeauvin

    gbeauvin Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2010
    Hey guys! I've been a municode madman lately, looking at all the surrounding communities that we might move into later this year. Some of them are very clear (Hartselle, for instance -- specifically says no chickens in the city limit except as allowed in AG-zoned areas) but others, such as Madison, are rather quiet on the whole pet subject.

    The Code of Ordinances specifically calls out no livestock, but does not define it. They also have a section that says that all penned animals, including fowl, must have a minimum pen size of 15sq ft per animal or fowl. So -- from a Ordinance standpoint, I think I'd be golden for chickens.

    The zoning rules, however, are a little less clear. There is a R1 that permits "Agricultural uses of the land for crops, residential gardens or landscaping but specifically excluding commercial poultry, animal farms and dog kennels.". The R1A, however, makes no such mention of agriculture (and most of the other Rxx zones refer back to R1A for permitted uses). They don't mention pets or animals at all, though, so I'm hoping that a backyard flock might fall under "Accessory uses and buildings"?

    Anyone dealt with zoning codes like this, either sucessfully or unsucessfully?

    thanks!

    -GB
     
  2. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

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    You have to find out what their official definition of "commercial poultry" is. Otherwise, sounds like you can have pet, small hobby flock birds.
     
  3. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Tempe, Arizona
    You need to check the Rules of Construction, which are generally located in the administrative and definitions stuff at the very beginning of zoning code. It is VERY COMMON that it will state that unless a use is specifically allowed, it is disallowed. So lack of mention of a use does NOT necessarily mean it is allowed. It OFTEN means that it is disallowed.
     
  4. gbeauvin

    gbeauvin Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2010
    Quote:I'm pretty sure that's the case here, but since there is no mention of things that are often associated with residential living (like sheds, or shrubberies, or any mention of pets) I was wondering if that was all part of "accessory use and buildings"... and whether that might be construed to include any "pet" chickens, or small gardens... or henhouse [​IMG].

    -GB
     
  5. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Jan 4, 2009
    Tempe, Arizona
    Quote:I'm pretty sure that's the case here, but since there is no mention of things that are often associated with residential living (like sheds, or shrubberies, or any mention of pets) I was wondering if that was all part of "accessory use and buildings"... and whether that might be construed to include any "pet" chickens, or small gardens... or henhouse [​IMG].

    -GB

    Animals would typically be mentioned in a separate section from buildings and structures. Figure out your specific zoning district, then look up the allowed uses for that district.
     
  6. gbeauvin

    gbeauvin Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 22, 2010
    The areas we're looking at are zoned R-1A, R-1B, and R-2. The permitted uses for R-2 are : "Any use allowed as a Permitted Use in the R-1B District". And the R-1B permitted uses are "Any use allowed as a Permitted Use in the R-1A District".

    The R-1A District says the following :
    "4‐1‐1 Permitted Uses
    Detached single family homes (excluding mobile homes)
    Accessory uses and buildings
    Family care facility
    Signs subject to the provisions of Article VII
    Essential services, including and limited to water, sewer, gas, telephone, and
    electrical systems, including substations, lift stations, and similar sub‐installations
    necessary for the performance of these services.
    Minor Home Occupations, subject to the provisions of Article XIV (Ord. 92‐25)"


    Nowhere in the zoning does it even mention the word "pet" other than as a type of store allowed in one of the commercial district, the only mention of the word "dog" is to define dog kennel, and exclude it from a permitted use in the R-1 district. The words fowl, and chicken are found nowhere in the document.

    I'm beginning to think that there are no zoning regulations on pets (including non-commercial chickens), and that the ordinances are the only thing I need to worry about on that front [​IMG].

    -GB
     

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