Code Enforcement says they gotta go....

Discussion in 'Goats' started by jill.costello, Aug 23, 2011.

  1. jill.costello

    jill.costello Well-Known Member

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    :flame: Seems neighbors have filed a complaint that I have too many "hooved animals" on my property (3 horses and 2 goats on 3 acres in Florida is NOT excessive in ANY way :hair).

    Code enforcement officer just gave me the bad news: some combination of 3 animals have got to go. He says that because of the complaint, they "went back into the records" and found that this grand-fathered-in property has never had more than 2 horses on it since it was approved for "non-conforming use"....therefore, they are under "no obligation" to allow more than 2 now.....

    I have had Cayenne (Alpine Doe) and Sparkey (her wether-son) with me for YEARS. I got Cayenne as a kid, and she's 6 or 7 now. Sparkey is 5 or 6.

    They are HORNED goats, no papers, not "cuddly", but they do a crack-up job keeping all the fencelines clean and all the tree's trimmed up to about 6 foot off the ground. They are easy-keepers, and UTD on their CDT, worming, and hooves. They come when you shake a bucket, and you can catch them for their shots/feet/etc. by simply grabbing a horn and then clipping them to the fence with a snap.

    Cayenne WAS milked long ago after she had her twins (Sparkey and Troubles), but I didn't keep up with it so she's been dry for over 5 years.

    I will PAY someone to give them a good home with lots of land and browse to clean! I will DELIVER for free. I am in Florida...

    I love them and don't want to lose them, but I'm just not up to fighting this fight. I am usually a fighter, but my PTSD is really flaring lately and I just don't feel sharp and strong right now... :Bawling:
     
  2. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    Get your doc to write documentation that you need these animals for your PTSD treatment.

    Apply for a variance when you get calm. :)
     

  3. Minelson

    Minelson Well-Known Member

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    I'm so sorry Jill :( I could just strangle your neighbors! This just really stinks. Maybe you could get a lawyer to do the fighting for you??? (((HUGS)))
     
  4. DaniR1968

    DaniR1968 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Be sure and get some geese or guiney fowl and pen them next to the neighbors. They'll wish for the goats back.

    Double check what you were told. I've been given blatent misinformation before. I would do that before rehoming anything.
     
  5. Donna1982

    Donna1982 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Oh I am so sorry. I would flip out if that happened to me. Like Alice said could your doctor wirte up something for you?
     
  6. Cannon_Farms

    Cannon_Farms Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I second Alice, the removal of your animals would be to traumatic to your struggling recovery.
     
  7. KimM

    KimM Student of goatology.

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    Where in all those rules is it WRITTEN that there's a limited number of animals? I can't see that unless it actually states that somewhere, they can make that stick.
     
  8. jill.costello

    jill.costello Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure everyone remembers when I bought this property last year, so I will give the details:

    I bought a property INSIDE the Ocala city limits. It is ZONED R1-A, which is residential with a non-conforming Ag WAIVER due to hooved animals being on the property consistantly since before the city took this area into their residential zoning. It was "grandfathered in", in essence.

    When I bought the property, it was conditional upon the WAIVER of non-conforming use being continued, so the City Code office DID send me a letter stating that because there had been horses on the property for the year prior to my purchase that they would leave the waiver in place. If I ever lapse and have NO animals on it for more than a 12 month timeframe, then the waiver would cease and the property would revert back to pure R1 status forever. No where in the document *I* received was there a limit on the animal number.....

    BUT, now that there was a complaint, they "dug dep" into their records and "discovered" the the very first original non-conforming use waiver that was approved in 1974 was for TWO hooved animals...... there had been no complaints since then, so that little tidbit was not remembered as the staff at the Code office changed over the years. They would never have known had there not been a complaint and therefore an investigation..... :sob:

    IF I try to re-open the case, and fight for more animals being allowed, then there is a CHANCE that the new board of directors will review the waiver and vote against it and completely revoke ALL waiver priviledges..... so, do I risk having to get rid of ALL my animals to fight for the right to keep 3 of the 5?......That is what I meant by not having the fight in me..... I just can't risk losing them all.....and selling this property in this market when we haven't completed all the repairs/updates would be impossible.

    When I was stronger, that IS what I would've done.... told them where to shove it and sold the property and moved. But I am tired. And mentally fragile right now. And there just isn't enough $$ to fight this one on principal. This will be the first time in my life I have simply folded, and it makes me nauseus to even think about it.

    I am going to make the plea for TIME. 90 days to re-home the goaties and then plead for 1 year for the old mare, explaining that she is 29 yrs old, and is not expected to last the year, anyway, and that the sole reason there ARE 3 horses on the property was to provide a companion for the horse that would have ended up alone should the mare have passed away one day unexpectedly. I believe they may work with me on this; the code officer was very sympathetic and swore he would never "seize" the animals; but that I needed to cal his boss and begin the negotiations willingly in order to get the best likelyhood of a fair compromise. So, I called his boss and left a very respectful, calm message and am expecting a call back..... Cross fingers everyone!

    FYI, I was SERIOUS when I said I would PAY to have someone home my goats! $40.00 per month for a year! That will cover all their hoof trimming, their vaccinations, and worming, plus pellets or hay if they need it in winter.
     
  9. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    Let us know if you need anything we can provide long distance. If I were closer, I'd be there with my trailer to help.

    Huggs,
    Alice
     
  10. Donna1982

    Donna1982 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    What was the reasons your neighbors turned you in? Do they just not like livestock? I am very sorry you are going through this. I would take them if I lived closer. Do you have any family or friends that can take the goats until you could maybe sell the house if you choose to do that?
     
  11. crazygoatgal

    crazygoatgal Well-Known Member

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    I'll keep you and your situation in prayer, I hope you feel better soon...
     
  12. CraterCove

    CraterCove Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I would want to find out the nature of the complaint. Also... if they want to play that game I would be scouring the codes and find what the surrounding neighbors are doing that is questionable.

    I know to some people 3 acres seems like a good piece of land but I swear these days I wouldn't live any closer than I do now to other people-- we have 80 acres and everyone in the area has larger pieces of land too. I can't see any other houses from my front porch. Unless my neighbors are family or people whose family has lived in the area for more than 3 generations, I just don't want anything to do with other people these days. Too many people are just petty and so small that they cannot feel satisfied unless they attack other people.

    I am sorry, if I still had my place in High Springs I would let you bring them out there so atleast you could still visit. Good luck and I am really truly sorry for what these 'neighbors' have done to you.
     
  13. farmergirl

    farmergirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Fight. Go to every meeting of the board you can.
    If you were never informed of the restriction in number of animals, they very likely don't have a leg to stand on.
    Just because they "fixed the glitch" doesn't mean you should have to scramble.

    The squeaky wheel gets the grease. You need to be as squeaky as you can be and stand up for your rights.

    In this time of animals being discarded like garbage due to the down economy, the fact that someone would complain about your well cared for animals really chaps my hide :grumble:
     
  14. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I think you did well to call right away to open the dialog.

    I'm sorry that you are being forced to do this.
     
  15. houndlover

    houndlover Well-Known Member

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    What if you put booties on them and call them dogs?
     
  16. AuntKitty

    AuntKitty Well-Known Member

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    I will PM you Jill. I would be happy to take them. I am NE of Tallahassee and have Nubians so they would have companions or could be a herd of their own, whatever they want :) You could also come visit them if you like.

    Kitty
     
  17. GoldenCityMuse

    GoldenCityMuse "Slick" Supporter

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    Sorry to hear about it.

    This is one of the many reasons I will not live inside the city limits. Too much regulation.
     
  18. PNP Katahdins

    PNP Katahdins sheep & antenna farming Supporter

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    Especially the complaining neighbors if you find out who they are. Not really nice to complain about other neighbors who are doing you no harm. So no one ever complained directly to you about odors, weeds, noise, etc., directly? That's wrong.

    Good luck and go hug your therapy goats. Aunt Kitty is your Plan B.

    Peg
     
  19. CraterCove

    CraterCove Well-Known Member

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    I think this is an excellent idea! Run with that one. lol
     
  20. Backfourty,MI.

    Backfourty,MI. Katie Supporter

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    That is so nice of you AuntKitty to offer to take Jill's goats, I bet they would be loved & well cared for at your place!

    It's too bad though there are folks like Jill's neighbors! They make me so mad & they probly never had a lick of toruble from one of her critters! Darn city people, they are probly upset because there's flies or something stupid like that!!

    I'd do like DaniR1968 suggested & put a rooster with some chickens next to their fence line or a few Guinnea's would really get to them!

    Sending hugs your way Jill & hoping the transistion goes smoothly for your goats & hope you feel better soon.