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Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

I was unaware of the changes but apparently this just went though. The best I can tell is people with livestock, honeybees included, are no longer under Right to Farm protection with last months ruling. It would appear it would give townships and cities the authority to 'ban' people under certain situations. With many recent changes 'allowing' beekeeping nationwide, and recently a moratorium on an anti-beekping ordinance in nearby Auburn, MI, it wouldn't seem that we would go backwards.

Any thoughts?

http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/index.ssf/2014/04/holda_change_in_rules_for_mich.html
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

Often times the needs of the many are overruled by the needs of the few. Ignorance , Piety, selfishness and fear, can be powerful forces! But none so powerful as the fear of loosing an election! Majority rules! Make it an issue, rally support, and get out and vote!
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

my wife sent me a link about this. I live a country life, so it has little effect on me, and what i saw of the bill seemed reasonable. No livestock (bees included) if there are 25 houses within 1/8 mile from you, or is your livestock is within 150ft of anothers front door. It seemed somewhat reasonable to my thinking. as for bees, we all know that they can be pretty easily concealed if one desires. you may only be able to have a hive or two, but could probably do it without any difficulty.
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

The ruling will allow local governments to arbitrarily ban goats, chickens and beehives on any property where there are 13 homes within one eighth mile or a residence within 250 feet of the property, according to Michigan Public Radio.
Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/1235774/mi...-chickens-and-beekeepers/#VESxkPev8AjTIkQX.99

Seems like there is a discrepancy in the ruling already.
I do wonder who or what was the driving force behind such law to begin with. The noose tightens.....
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

You would have to live in the city to get 13 homes in 1/8th of a mile (660 ft) but the 250 feet from the property would hurt me. I don't think this ruling will live very long but you never know. I have out yards that wouldn't be a problem but in my own yard it could be.
I don't think they would or could police the ruling without a complaint from one of your neighbors so give out a couple quarts of honey to keep them on your good side. I agree with Tenbears, make it an issue, be heard!
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

I agree with Tenbears, make it an issue, be heard!
Apparently it has been made an issue and the majority has ruled. Beekeeping is and will always be a minority.
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

I for one am VERY concerned. Where I live in Oakland county there is no ordinance specifically banning beekeeping but I decided not to even try to tempt fate. I am in a neighborhood where the homes have spacious and partially wooded lots and my bees are completely fenced in and hidden from neighbor view. I decided to go with the "don't ask don't tell" approach to my hives when I saw the reactions many friends and family members had when I told them that I was going to become a hobbyist beekeeper. I doubt my neighbors would be positive about hives on my property ,even though they are virtually invisible and the bee's flight path is 8 feet up in the air ( it tends to be a bit snobby and high strung where I live) As a new beekeeper it would make me sick if I was made to remove my two hives after putting in $900+ on new equipment and new landscape features to accommodate both the bees and neighbors in a more then responsible manner.
I could understand a limit on the number of hives being imposed in certain developed areas, but the way this law has been written it will allow the ignorant stigma that bees get to prevent a hobbyist from having hives-something that should be ENCOURAGED because of their benefit on the environment. I hope this new law gets tossed in the toilet sooner then later.
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

If you want to try and understand the background on how the law came into being, you should be able to go back to Lansing and view the original bill, testimony, bill sponsors, etc. This will give you at least information if not understanding...you could even make a call to some of the sponsoring legislators offices and speak to them directly...
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

You would have to live in the city to get 13 homes in 1/8th of a mile (660 ft) but the 250 feet from the property would hurt me.

You'd only have to live withing 1/8 of a mile of two 8plex apartment complexes. I live on 6 acres, my neighbor has 10 and my neighbor on the other side has 3 acres. Including my house there are 6 houses withing an 1/8 mi radius of my hives and those hives are pretty close to center of my property. There are 10-11 houses with in an 1/8 mi radius of my house. You would have to have 31.1 acres in an circle with your hive in the middle of that circle in order for you to be out of range for an 1/8 mile radius of any homes.

This is the typical problem with these type of legislation, people throw a number out there with very little thought as to the limitations it can place on people.

~Matt
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

This would affect me also, I am in a residential zone and each lot around me is 1 acre, so the 13 houses I don't think would make it but I'm 100ft from my next door neighbor, so my small operation is potentially in the crosshairs. As a few of you have said all it would take is one person to complain. It does seem like the local governments would be going 'backwards' in enforcing this, being many communities have gone the other way in recent years allowing for urban beekeeping. I wish I knew about this earlier, I would have gotten a little more involved in it.

One thing I don't understand is this seems to target 'livestock' more so than bees. I did some searching and I'm not sure if I found the correct one under MI Legislature but it is: (2) “Livestock” means those species of animals used for human food and fiber or those species of animals used for service to humans. Livestock includes, but is not limited to, cattle, sheep, new world camelids, goats, bison, privately owned cervids, ratites, swine, equine, poultry, aquaculture, and rabbits. Livestock does not include dogs and cats.

If anyone else has more information on this I'm interested.

Brad
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

This would affect me also, I am in a residential zone and each lot around me is 1 acre, so the 13 houses I don't think would make it

Theoretically the lot size of every house around you would have to be ~2.4acres or larger in order for 13 houses to not be within a 1/8mi radius from yours. If your hives were in the center of a one acre sq lot and all the other lots around you were 1 acre square 20 houses, not including yours would be within 1/8 of a mile rad. An additional 23 properties would be partially with in the radius and depending on the placement of these houses on those properties potentially 43 houses could be with in an 1/8th of a mile radius.

Now granted that is not including roads, oddly shaped lots etc so reality is that the numbers are lower. I'm just trying to point out that a piece of legislation like this will potentially effect far more people then just "City folks". You could have a decent size lot and be surrounded by smaller lots and easily hit the 13 homes number.

~Matt
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

my Neighbors get no honey, because I won't let ANYBODY know I keep bees. Don't ask don't tell is the best way to stay out of trouble. Of course instantly going with the Fresh Honey bribe would be my tactic if caught..... Never give out information you don't have to.
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

Here in florida they've passed state bills that override any county or city laws. A residental lot (1/4 acre) can have up to 3 hives. From there, the larger your lot, there more hives you can have. I'm on 5 acres out in the country so never really affectedme.
As for Michighan passing that law.....politicians......they create laws on stuff they dont even understand. just dont get it. I gess you have to be born an idiot to become a politician. (apolgies to any here if offended! :) )
 

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Re: Any Michigan Beekeepers concerned with the recent ruling "loss" of Right to Farm?

>Don't ask don't tell is the best way to stay out of trouble.

In my experience, the savvy ones will know and won't care. The ones who are ignorant of bees can't comprehend what it means for you to have bees. If they figure it out after they've been there for a year, then they usually realize how little it has affected them. Telling a neighbor who knows nothing about bees that you will be getting bees is like telling them you will have a Martian rooming with you... they don't have a clue what that means...
 
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