Tanya Ball 0

Backyard Hens in Huntsville

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My name is Riley Ball. I am 10 years old and I live with my parents at 893 Old Muskoka Road in Utterson. We live on three quarters of an acre of land 'in the country'. Our property is zoned Rural Residential. Two years ago I got some laying hens that I take care of every day and collect their eggs. I have learned a lot about being responsible and how to grow your own food.

But there is a problem. Backyard hens are allowed only if you have one acre of land, and we fall short of that requirement. I think it's time that the rules around backyard hens in the Town of Huntsville’s zoning bylaw are looked at again. If the bylaw doesn’t get changed, my hens have to go. I think that backyard hens should be allowed in the country no matter what size your property is because that's where they belong.

My parents have done a lot of research, and this is what they told me: In 2013, Huntsville Town Council changed the rules to allow backyard hens in the urban area of Huntsville on properties zoned Residential 1 and Residential 2 as long as the property is one acre in size. The one-acre minimum lot size rule is the same for the Rural Residential zone even though the zoning and the characteristics of these lots are so different. The Residential 1 & 2 zoning requires much smaller road frontage and lot area in comparison to Rural Residential lots. Rural Residential lots are generally much larger and require more road frontage. If backyard hens are allowed in town, I think they should be allowed in the Rural Residential zone regardless of lot area.

It's time for change! By signing this petition, you are showing support for backyard hens in the Rural Residential zone without a lot area requirement. By signing this petition, you are helping to demonstrate to Huntsville Town Council and town staff that it's time to update that section of the Town of Huntsville’s Zoning Bylaw to support healthy, sustainable rural living.

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