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Zoning and Planning

The use of land for the keeping of horses and livestock has become a topic of major concern in many areas of the United States. As the available land in suburban areas becomes more precious and economic pressures increase, there is a movement to replace pastureland and stables with residential homes. And as many of the city dwellers move to more rural areas, they begin to vocalize their concerns for having farm animals as their “neighbors”. This vocalization turns to land use disputes and reconsiderations for zoning.

Working with legal counsel on the compliances in select communities which allow horses is becoming a greater challenge. Understanding proper protocols for fencing, manure disposal, pasture management, trail riding access and general horse care are all important factors to consider in these issues. Compliance with the local ordinances dealing with health related issues must be considered, including access to waterways, and the crossing of waterways.

Issues associated with horses being an attractive nuisance and trespassers may cause considerable issues for the urban horse owners and potential liabilities. All of this raises the question, does the horse owner, land owner have sufficient insurance to protect their property and potential exposure?

Restrictions on the number of horses per acre need to be understood and reasonable for the geographic area, along with the use of the horses as a commercial business or private stable.

Odor, air pollution, noise, and uses all impact on the horse owner in today’s society. Legislation needs to be pro-active working together to protect the rights of all parties, for today and the future.

Hipsley & Associates is prepared to work with legal counsel or city law makers in the preparation and enforcement of zoning codes dealing with horses and livestock.

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Hipsley & Associates, LLC 
Lexington, KY

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