Urban farming in Binghamton, New York, put out to pasture, for now
Four councilman primarily cited health concerns related to everything from bee keeping to compost piles and chicken coops attracting rats and cats that could spread disease, along with concerns about enforcement and impact on residential neighborhoods.
By David Robinson
July 2, 2013
BINGHAMTON — After more than a year of debating and revising the proposal, City Council on Tuesday once again delayed a vote on legislation seeking to more clearly define and promote urban agriculture regulations.
Following impassioned pleas for passage from nine residents, who cited the economic, health and community benefits of the new regulations, each council member spoke briefly about their stance before they decided to table the legislation.
The decision, which likely sends the legislation back to committee for further discussion, left many of the roughly 15 people at the meeting frustrated and confused.
Among them was Wesley Davy, 35, of Lincoln Avenue. He raises chickens, has raised-bed gardens and composts at his home.
All of these are permitted under existing regulations, but Davy said the proposed legislation would have established better guidelines for the growing urban agriculture movement, which includes everything from backyard gardens to urban farms, such as the one on Tudor Street.