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LA Times: Beekeepers urge L.A. council to allow backyard hives

LA Times article about backyard beekeeping

Beekeepers urge L.A. council to allow backyard hives

by Emily Alpert Reyes—February 12, 2014, 8:22 a.m.

Backyard beekeepers are urging the city to allow Angelenos to keep hives at home, joining the ranks of cities such as New York and Santa Monica that already permit the practice in residential areas.

The Los Angeles City Council is slated to vote Wednesday on whether to ask city officials to draw up a report on allowing beekeeping in residential zones, a possible first step toward permitting backyard beekeeping.

Under Los Angeles city codes, beekeeping isn’t allowed in residential zones, according to city planning officials. Backyard beekeeping has nonetheless blossomed as Angelenos committed to locavore living or worried about the health of honeybees have started tending hives at home.

“It’s the yummiest way of breaking the law,” said Max Wong, who keeps bees in her backyard in Mount Washington. Her neighbors were stunned when she told them it wasn’t allowed there under city code, she said.

“Beekeeping should never have been illegal,” Wong said. The image of urban greenery is “part of what makes Los Angeles, Los Angeles,” she said.

So far, both beekeepers and city officials say few complaints have been lodged about illegal beekeeping in Los Angeles neighborhoods. Such complaints are so rare, said Department of Building and Safety spokesman Luke Zamperini, that the department doesn’t track them in their own category.

Beekeepers argue that new rules would nonetheless wipe out the legal unease they now face in the city, clearing up exactly what is allowed.

“Regulations would bring Los Angeles up to speed with pretty much all the other major metropolitan areas around the country,” said Rob McFarland, co-founder of the Los Angeles beekeeping nonprofit HoneyLove. In addition, “it would give beekeepers the guidelines to help make it as safe as possible.”

More than a dozen neighborhood councils, including those in Van Nuys, Eagle Rock, Hollywood and Palms, have backed at least exploring the idea. Some supporters invoke the threat of colony collapse disorder, which has devastated commercial hives that pollinate billions of dollars in crops globally…

[view the complete article via latimes.com]

Read full story · Posted in HoneyLove Buzz, HoneyLove Interviews

Thank you Bel Air-Beverly Crest Neighborhood Council!

Thank you Bel Air-Beverly Crest Neighborhood Council for unanimously supporting URBAN BEEKEEPING in Los Angeles tonight!! That brings our total up to 15 NCs in support!

STEP 1:
sign petition
Change.org/petitions/legalize-urban-beekeeping-in-los-angeles-2

STEP 2:
Click here to email a letter of support to LA City Council!!

Beekeeping_15

*If you live/work in Los Angeles districts 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 15 – email us!

Legalize Urban Beekeeping

Read full story · Posted in HoneyLovin

Thank you Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council for voting in favor of URBAN BEEKEEPING IN LOS ANGELES tonight!! YAY BEES!!!

PLEASE TAKE 30 SECONDS TO SIGN OUR PETITION (you do not need to live in Los Angeles to sign):
http://www.change.org/petitions/legalize-urban-beekeeping-in-los-angeles-2 

Los Angeles Neighborhood Councils that officially support our urban beekeeping motion so far!! ? 
1. Mar Vista (11/8/11) 
2. Del Rey (12/8/11) 
3. Greater Griffith Park (1/17/12) 
4. South Robertson (1/19/12) 
5. Silver Lake (3/7/12) 
6. Hollywood United (3/19/12) 
7. Atwater Village (4/12/12) 
8. West Los Angeles (6/27/12)
9. Boyle Heights (7/25/12) 

Read full story · Posted in Uncategorized

ARTICLE: The Buzz on Urban Beekeeping by Rick Paulas KCET.org 

If you’re trying to raise money to save puppies or kittens or other adorable creatures, it’s simple. You find the cutest ones around, snap a few photos, get rights to a Sarah McLachlan song, throw some information up about where to send donations, and bam! Work’s done. But bees? A creature that mostly elicits the emotion of run-away-as-fast-as-you-can? They’re not exactly the easiest sell.

Which is the problem that’s been keeping Chelsea and Rob McFarland — husband-and-wife team behind the non-profit organization HoneyLove — busy for the past 18 months. Their goal of trying to make Los Angeles the latest city to legally allow urban beekeeping — in this regard, L.A. is a bit behind the curve; New York, San Francisco, Seattle and even Santa Monica are among the growing list of cities that allows beekeepers within city limits — isn’t an easy one.

Rick: Is there evidence you’ve seen that the disappearance of they honeybees is slowing down or stopping?

Chelsea: We have not seen the effects of Colony Collapse Disorder in our hives. We believe this is because the city is the last refuge of the honeybee. Traditional agriculture has put bees in to a tight spot for many reasons — pesticides, antibiotics, miticides, trucking bees across the country, feeding them high fructose corn syrup instead of allowing them to eat their natural honey, placing contaminated beeswax foundations in their hives… too many reasons to list!

As organic urban beekeepers we do not do any of that. Our home gardens are generally free of pesticides, and in cities like Los Angeles, there is year-round availability of pollen and nectar for the honeybees.

See more – and take the poll – here!

http://sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/227564_221441461216137_7548598_n.jpg

Read full story · Posted in Uncategorized

Legalization Meeting @ LA Councilman Rosendahl’s Office
Los Angeles, CA May 3, 2012

Click here to view the presentation (pdf)

Read full story · Posted in Uncategorized

We are 4/4 so far!!

PLEASE SIGN OUR PETITION:
http://www.change.org/petitions/legalize-urban-beekeeping-in-los-angeles-2

LA Neighborhood Councils that officially support our urban beekeeping motion so far!! ?
1. Mar Vista (11/8/11) – Letter of Support (pdf)
2. Del Rey (12/8/11)
3. Greater Griffith Park (1/17/12)
4. South Robertson (1/19/12)

Read full story · Posted in Uncategorized

LEGALIZATION UPDATE: 
DEL REY = ANOTHER VICTORY FOR THE BEES!!

Del Rey: Approved motion to support pilot program (December 2011)

Mar Vista: Approved motion to support pilot program (November 2011)

Santa Monica: LEGALIZED!!! (December 2010)

UP NEXT:
South Robertson Neighborhoods Council
Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council
(Venice & Culver City coming soon…)

MOTION:
“The board therefore recommends the implementation of a Beekeeping Pilot Program in to test safety and develop best practices for future expansion. We urge the City of LA to adopt a policy that includes conditions relating to maintenance, location, registration and notification to assure for the safety of all residents which may result in the continued preservation of quality of life and preservation of single-family residential districts.”

Click here to view resources to help legalize urban beekeeping in YOUR community!

Read full story · Posted in Uncategorized