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The Woodlands, Texas...aka. "Stepford Hell"...aka. "The Cult"

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances (and how to change' started by FarmFreedom, Mar 20, 2012.

  1. FarmFreedom

    FarmFreedom New Egg

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    Mar 20, 2012
    So as you can guess by the thread title I am living in a bureaucratic nightmare and have no idea how effect change in my community. The Woodlands (suburb of Houston) is known for being overly zealous in their enforcement of its covenants. It's not uncommon to receive actual photos of your front or back yard containing what they deem as an "infraction". They claim to be a "green" or "sustainable" community...now forcing us to take on another 90 gallon "recycle only" trash can...yet the idea of owning a few laying hens for fresh eggs is completely foreign to them.

    Are there any other Woodlands residents out there that would like to work with me to help change the rules?

    Here is where we stand thus far....


    Section 10.03: Keeping of Animals on Lots.

    No animals, except customary household pets, shall be kept or
    maintained on any Lot except as specifically authorized by WCA. No animal shall be allowed
    or permitted on any portion of the Property except the Lot of its owner unless same shall be
    under the control of the owner or another person by leash, rope, chain, or other restraining
    device; provided, however, that no animal shall be allowed on any Lot without the permission
    of the owner of that Lot. WCA shall have authority to seize and impound any animal on the
    Property in violation of this Section or the regulations established hereunder. WCA shall have
    authority to impose reasonable fees for animal registration or other animal control services,
    and to impose reasonable regulations setting forth the type and number of animals that may be
    kept on any Lot, and providing a method for disposing of animals which are unclaimed after a
    reasonable period of time. No dog or cat over six months of age shall be kept by any Resident
    unless such animal shall have a current rabies inoculation.

    Thanks,
    FF
     
  2. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC!

    I hope you get some help on fighting these regulations!
     
  3. MagicMarcy66

    MagicMarcy66 Out Of The Brooder

    Oh my goodness, that is scary. Did you have knowledge of this covenant when you moved in? That is really strict. Communistic is more of the word I am looking for. WOW!!! Have you consulted an attorney about getting this changed or talked with any neighbors about getting a petition together and gathering signatures? I feel bad for you. [​IMG]

    MM66
     
  4. kareninthesun

    kareninthesun Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There is too much left for interpretation here. Unless there is/are written specifics, it cannot be enforced legally. Check out the following:

    www.avvo.comLegalQuestions & AnswersResidentialCached

    If they go by toilet training goes, then ALL birds are disqualified. Rabbits can be trained to use a litter box, should they not be included as acceptable? What of the lizard/snake critters or those which must live in water? Pot bellied pigs (miniature sized) are often smarter than dogs, including using 'doggy doors' to successfully use when nature calls. Even DEER can be trained to live inside, and to let the family know when it/they need to go outside.

    I could understand under close living conditions why a rooster isn't needed, but really, my parrot makes a whole lot more noise and can be heard farther than my little flock of chickens. When my grandchildren come over to play, THEY make more noise!
     
  5. orumpoultry

    orumpoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The woodlands can be a nightmare. I hate navigating it when I'm down that way! - As far as those codes go? Have a legal person ready over the section and look for loop holes? What Karen said, ideally, makes PLENTY of sense.

     
  6. laseamonkey

    laseamonkey New Egg

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    Mar 26, 2012
    Hi, I live in The Woodlands also in Grogans Mill Village. I would love to make a change to the rules and be able to have a few chix in my backyard for eggs. I grew up with chickens and up in Dallas we had some but The Woodlands is too strict. Let me know what you find out.
     
  7. FarmFreedom

    FarmFreedom New Egg

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    Mar 20, 2012
    Sorry all...it's been a while since I had the time to visit here. I think my first step is calling The Woodlands "board" or "Operating company" or whatever "the man" is calling themsleves...lol....and asking what the specific process is for changing/adding/deleting a covenant. But I would imagine a petition will fit in there somewhere. This is a fairly large community...maybe I'll find a web developer sympathetic to the cause to create an informational website with an electronic petition...

    laseamonkey...just as soon as I learn something I'll get in touch with you. I'll bet there are more of us out here....

    FF
     
  8. Malie

    Malie New Egg

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    Mar 19, 2012
    I find your post encouraging. I have desired 'urban' chickens for a couple three years now. Now that I am homeschooling, its seems a wonderful opportunity to see that come to fruition. In my research I found a woman who got our city ordinance changed to allow up to seven chickens. In further research I have found that our homeowners association does not permit chickens. I, too, am in the process of research the means to go about encouraging changes to this covenant written in 1968. Hence, my landing here to do some research. Good luck. I will be glad to share as I come about new information and would welcome your learnings as well.
     
  9. laseamonkey

    laseamonkey New Egg

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    Mar 26, 2012
    Farm Freedom,
    I will do what I can as well researching and will see what can be done about this. I will let you know anything I find out. Appreciate what you are doing!

    Malie,
    Do you live in The Woodlands also?
     
  10. Malie

    Malie New Egg

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    Mar 19, 2012
    laseamonkey,
    No, I do not. I live in Corpus Christi.
     

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