Research first to formulate a better ordinance second
Posted by cjkrebs on March 21, 2012
HensforHouston Group is currently in the research phase of investigations into a decent ordinance. We currently do not have a detailed proposal for a new ordinance. We believe that to write a functional ordinance requires a dialogue between all interested parties and well-researched data to support a new proposal.
Therefore, we are doing our research first, and publishing it to this site. For example, we have been compiling information from other cities to use as guidelines for our own ordinance. We have also been working on our FAQ pages, to answer potential concerns and dispel myths about the raising of hens.
With the help of Rice University, we are creating a GIS map of the City of Houston, especially neighborhoods which most suffer from Food Deserts: a dearth of grocery stores and access to real food. These neighborhoods also have some of the smallest lot sizes. From this analysis we plan to propose new distance-from-neighboring-residence requirements. Before deciding on a new distance requirement, we need to know what would actually benefit the majority of residents.
We also are attempting to organize a group of interested parties who can give input as to what the new ordinance should include. This includes possibilities such as distance from other residences, limits on number of hens, permits, minimum coop sizes, and enforcement rules. The end goal is an enforceable ordinance that will allow those who want to raise hens like other pets to do so, while being responsible neighbors.
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