The Lone Grove City Council recently held a workshop on animals and invited the public to attend. The purpose of the workshop was to look over the current city ordinances and find ways of reducing restrictions currently in place on agricultural areas of the city.
“If you look at a map of the city of Lone Grove, it’s huge geographically speaking,” said City Manager Ian O’Neal. “Eighty percent of it is probably agricultural and it’s divided up into pretty much five acre blocks. Then you have the Lots and Blocks, that pretty much is the residential areas behind Subway and Sonic.”
“The way our city ordinances are written, you have to have 20 acres or more to have livestock,” O’Neal continued. “So if you don’t have 20 acres you can’t have a goat. You can’t have a chicken.”
In order to allow more people access to livestock, the city council is considering dropping that restriction down to five acres or more. This reduction would only pertain to agricultural areas of the city and not apply to the Lots and Blocks portion of the city.
Another key element to the proposed changes state that the land must be able to support the livestock.
“We don’t want someone to have 50 horses on five acres,” O’Neal explained. “The land is not going to support that.”
Another change being brought to the table is the ability to possess show pigs in agricultural areas of the city. The city does not currently allow for any swine to live in the city limits with the exception of show pigs that reside at the school’s agricultural barn.
“They are looking at, in agricultural areas, that you can have four show pigs as verified by a director,” said O’Neal. “I don’t have the wording worked out just yet, but say code enforcement shows up at your house, they’ll ask who is your FFA or 4H director. As long as that checks out, you’re okay. If not, you’ll be fined.”
As the workshop was just held last week, the vote on these ordinances will not take place at this month’s city council meeting. O’Neal is hopeful, however, that they will take place during the regularly scheduled meeting in August.