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  1. #41
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Plant City, Florida
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: Beekeeper Certification Hillsborough County FL

    Quote Originally Posted by AmericasBeekeeper View Post
    Thanks Monkadelic, Charlie B, Mbeck, RogerCrum, and FL Beak. I wish more beekeepers had something positive to contribute. You do not have to know anything about bees to post on the website though.
    AB so you are the authority on "knowing anything about bees" I dont think you meant to say that
    anytime you open the door and let government in you cannot be sure of the outcome, politics can change things in the blink of an eye, the thought of government control in my county sends chills down my spine, Isnt the state working a law covering this to overide all the county ordinances

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Hillsborough, Florida, USA
    Posts
    72

    Default Re: Beekeeper Certification Hillsborough County FL

    This is the email that I sent to Tom Hiznay of the Hillsborough County Planning and Growth Management Department:

    Tom:

    Thank you so much for sending the proposed ordinance.

    Over a year ago my son returned from his work day as an intern with a Plant City beekeeper with the woodware for a beehive. He wanted to keep bees in the backyard. I thought it was a great idea.

    I read everything I could get my hands on and subscribed to the forums on beesource.com. My son, of course, because he had interned for most of the summer with a beekeeper, thought he knew it all. He didn't (nor do I).

    Having educated ourselves to the best of our ability, We installed a package of bees. Last Autumn our family, friends and neighbors were treated to gift bottles of urban backyard Hillsborough County honey, and it was delicious. I even had enough left over to brew a batch of mead. We were and are proud of what we helped the honeybees to produce. One of my neighbors put up a small sign in his setcresia welcoming "Bob's Bees".

    We live on a 1/3 acre lot and we carefully plan and plant our Florida friendly yard, mostly with natives. The bee box is carefully situated for the bees' maximum benefit, considering sunshine and wind protection. Its location is not compliant with the 25' setback. If we WERE to meet the setback requirement, the siting would be much less optimal for the bees, as it would be mostly shaded.

    Our experience with bees has been nothing but positive, even joyful. Our Simpson's Stopper bore fruit this year in an abundance not previously seen due to the bees' pollenation. Our East Palatka Hollies, Florida Privets, porterweed and many others have offered their nectar and pollen to our bees. I'm sure our bees boosted the harvests of many neighboring urban gardeners.

    Not long ago it came to my attention that my box might be illegal. Given what I know and what I had learned about honeybees that seemed astonishing to me. I then learned that Hillsborough County was considering changing the land development code to allow urban beekeeping. You can't imagine how relieved and proud I was to hear that Hillsborough was to do what so many enlightened jurisdictions had already done.

    Very recently, some of the proposed "conditions" have been revealed to me. The joy is gone, Mr. Hiznay. The pride in Hillsborough's enlightenment is, too.

    Urban beekeepers are not introducing an exotic menace to the urban environment. Urban beekeepers are helping a magical, unaggressive and beleaguered insect to return to areas where they had been all but eliminated. Honeybees are not a menace. Everything about the ordinance sends a message to my neighbors that they are, and that they need protection from them. Personally I would prefer that Hillsborough County not adopt an ordinance allowing urban beekeeping at all then that you adopt an ordinance that institutionalizes the myth that honeybees are a menace.

    My bee box and my bees will be leaving my neighborhood. I have been discouraged from this wonderful hobby that has brought pleasure to so many of my family, friends and neighbors by this prospect of mandated licensing and education, mandated, onerous, silly and superfluous siting requirements and the apparent prevalence of misinformation about this wonderful, benign creature.

    I'm not a person who normally opposes regulation. I have to say, though, that it is my firm conviction that this ordinance as proposed is a massive overreach, unwarranted in any way by any real threat posed by honeybees. The County also should not be in the business of propagating the myth that honeybees are a menace, as this proposed legislation would do.

    If it's not too late, I hope that you, County staff, will carefully weigh the real need for these intrusive, burdensome and unnecessary regulatory measures. I will repeat, I am not anti-goverment in general at all. But these proposed restrictions and mandates on urban beekeepers seem to me to be SO over the top... I'm truly disheartened.

  3. #43
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Palm Bay, FL, USA
    Posts
    2,312

    Default Re: Beekeeper Certification Hillsborough County FL

    Good post and awesome letter!

  4. #44
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,288

    Default Re: Beekeeper Certification Hillsborough County FL

    Quote Originally Posted by fish_stix View Post
    Good post and awesome letter!
    Agreed!
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    havana fl
    Posts
    1,340

    Default Re: Beekeeper Certification Hillsborough County FL

    It would be best for everyone to just repeal the existing regulation making it illegal to keep bees.
    I’m really not that serious

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