Bees and disease in Encinitas???

Jerome Stocks Jerome Stocks 23 Comments


“Looking at an aerial map of Encinitas in the 1970s and 1980s compared to today, it’s sad,” Tony Kranz said. “The city had agriculture everywhere; we have to fight for small farms today.”

BUT, a new study from UC Davis says the exposure of pregnant women to agriculture may increase the incidence of babies being born with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Yet Encinitas Deputy Mayor Kranz wants to increase small agriculture in suburban neighborhoods, including bee hives. Bees? Our family-friendly suburban neighborhoods are to be living with swarms of bees if this guy gets his way? Really?

OK, so we’ve got potential killer bee swarms and potential and unstudied link between agriculture pesticides and autism. Way to go, Mr. “Hope and Change” Kranz.  I am a strong supporter of the family farm and agriculture, but not in established suburban neighborhoods. That train left the station in Encinitas in about 1970. Most every family I know in my neighborhood has a backyard vegetable garden, and some even have chickens. This is great for the kids’ education, but VERY different from a commercial farming operation and commercial beehives!

Let’s hope the rest of the City Council can inject some common sense and protect the Encinitas quality of life from the threat of Mr. Kranz’ bees and possible disease.

Per the Encinitas Advocate in the June 18 issue: “…Along with reducing buffers, Kranz said an ordinance makes it easier for small commercial farms to obtain permits.”

Please see references below:


Comments 23

  1. Post

    Hi Brian,
    I get that very libertarian concept, and so by extension all zoning is an infringement on property rights. But in an area where there’s a level of density that can easily create conflict, zoning and setback rules are helpful in creating a desirable community. I’m certain you wouldn’t welcome a gunpowder factory or diesel truck repair shop next door to your happy home. And neither would I, even though we are both “property rights” oriented people.
    I say keep the bees and the commercial farming operations in the rural areas where they belong!

  2. Just a thought — we have a bee hive 30 feet from our front door in Scripps Ranch — 10 feet off the busy street sidewalk. It’s been there for many years — not commercial — just a protected, hollow brick column on my property line that the bees have used as a hive.

    Annually there’s usually a swarm as a queen leaves with her brood — we try to get a commercial bee gathering company to come by and gather the swarm if they hang around.

    The only instance of stinging that I’m aware of was when our neighbor got WAY too close to the hive to do some gardening — apparently created too much of a stir. She was stung 4 times. We discussed removing the hive, but both they and we decided to leave ’em alone. Something about bees serving some valuable ecological function.

    I’m not speaking to the issue from either side. Just pointing out that we coexist with them, and seldom give it a second thought. And, as y’all may well know, I’m anti-environment (well, according to foes).

    But, to each his own.

  3. Hi Richard,
    A neighbor got WAY to close? So the bees get to decide what the boundaries are? The issue now in Encinitas is about the ability of people in suburban zoned areas being allowed to do commercial farming, and bee keeping.

  4. Let’s cut the crap. This is about developers maxing out the remaining
    lots in Encinitas.

  5. Mr. Therrio,
    Making local regulations more liberal regarding commercial bee keeping and commercial farming in existing suburban neighborhoods is in no way related to development.
    I realize you have a fixation, but please try to post relevant comments. Your alternative point of view could be instructive if it becomes more rational. Say hi to Mary for me.

  6. I don”t argue against a municipal government right of police powers, Jerome but I do think municipal officials serially interfere into what can be resolved between neighbors (see Mr, Rider’s example)

    Is a Lone Jack Road property better for a beekeeper than one at 3rd & I streets? Probably but the downtown beekeeper will find that out with the third or fourth lawsuit…and so will subsequent would-be downtown beekeepers and their insurance companies.

    At the end of the day, insurance companies really regulate property use better than governments

  7. Brian, there is an old phrase “good fences make good neighbors”.
    Good zoning is just municipal fencing. And properly adjudicated it helps build better communities and good neighbors.
    Third or forth lawsuit? No thanks. Let the plaintiff’s bar get rich elsewhere, like suing to demand E.I.R. studies for fireworks or children’s birthday parties.

  8. “but the downtown beekeeper will find that out with the third or fourth lawsuit…”

    What about the 3-4 people that got stung? What if one or more of them were allergic to bee stings?

    I am a firm believer that your property rights end when they affect my rights to live safely on my property.

  9. Mr. Stocks has some good points. I don’t get what the Deputy Mayor Kranz wants to accomplish. Just go next door and ask your neighbor if they would have a problem with this new agricultural arrangement and additional nieghbees – I don’t think you’ll be surprised by their answer. Hint – bring cookies!!!

  10. “Let the plaintiff’s bar get rich elsewhere, like suing to demand E.I.R. studies for fireworks or children’s birthday parties.”

    Do you understand why that’s a bad analogy, Mayor Stocks? My example respects property rights and the proper use of torts while the one you cite abuses property rights and a de facto abuse of tort law.

    “What about the 3-4 people that got stung?”

    They have a clear tort action against the property owner, don’t they, HQ? There are more Americans attacked by dogs annually than are allergic people stung by bees each year and yet I see dogs running loose on Encinitas beaches.

    “What if one or more of them were allergic to bee stings?”

    About as many Americans die from dog attacks annually as do bee stings. I”m not interested in banning dogs from people’s properties.

    I”m digging in on this because Jerome’s comments reflect and attitude which is one displayed by too many elected officials. They rely on the argumentam ad populam fallacy while ignoring real threats to public safety.. They let mobs influence policy and run roughshod over property rights.

    Kranz is playing a political game to make the Republicans vote AGAINST property rights. I seriously doubt any insurance company is going to insure a bee farm next to the Whole Foods on Coast Hwy but Republicans will rail against Kranz because he is a Democrat.

    This is how we lose elections.

  11. Brian,

    “They have a clear tort action against the property owner, don’t they, HQ?”

    I would prefer to avoid injury rather than sue for the injury.

  12. Can I open a shooting range in my suburban backyard as long as I understand I might be sued if one of my neighbors get shot?

  13. Sorry Brian Brady, I must disagree with your accusation that I’m relying on argumentum ad populum. I don’t know what the popular belief is re suburban yards being turned into commercial farms or commercial bee keeping ventures, I just know I don’t want to live next to that nonsense and believe Mr. Kranz is espousing bad policy ideas for Encinitas.

    A role of the City Council is to provide policy and oversight. And policies matter. His expressed concept is not in keeping with improving the quality of life in our long established suburban built environment.

    This opinion of mine has nothing to do with argumentum ad populum because I don’t know what the masses would think of this. But I do believe in property rights, while giving a nod to the fact that we as individuals sacrifice some liberty for the betterment of all in a civilized society.

    Much like a traffic light is an infringement, but it keeps us organized and therefore safer in our transportation mode of choice. The key is to not give away too much liberty while accepting the fact that rules need to exist.

    But I do appreciate you raising the level of debate on this website.

  14. HQ, yes, you can. But then you couldn’t shoot there.

    There are county regs that restrict shooting a firearm in certain areas to self-defense. Not coincidentally, the areas restricted are densely populated.
    There are also noise restrictions that would stop the activity of shooting because of the type of sound a firearm produces.

    You can build a shooting range on your property anywhere in the county, but you can’t necessarily shoot a gun there. You can open an archery range on your land anywhere in San Diego. And as long as your arrows don’t leave your property, there’s no lawsuit.

    HQ and Mr. Stocks, isn’t your reaction to and aversion of lawsuits Brian’s point about lawsuits?
    I frankly cannot believe someone is talking legal action about bees, but if given the choice between fresh honey and paying a lawyer…

  15. Hi Jerome; I want to thank you for the UCD article. I didn’t know this information, and I do know there seems to be a rise in autism for young people. Whether it is just pesticides is still being debated, but it is interesting and I am sharing it with 2 moms I know that have autistic children. I don’t have enough information about bees, so I will let others comment on that. Any and all information on health issues concern me, so if you find more, please post or send them directly to me. My email is: Thanks.

  16. Michael,

    My point was simply that property rights aren’t absolute since one person’s property rights can infringe on another’s. Your examples of noise restrictions and restrictions on when a gun can be shot are two good examples of the government restricting property rights to protect property rights. Maybe, not allowing bee keepers to set up shop in a suburban neighborhood is another one.

  17. I was pointing out that what is regulated is what leaves your property. In the case of a range it is the unnatural excessive noise and projectiles.
    It is hard for me to think of bees the same way. They occur in nature. There’s even a bee hive at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum in the middle of Washington D.C. Swarms of people visit downtown D.C. every year. Maybe even more than downtown Encinitas. And those tourists manage to live through it.

  18. Michael,

    If “They occur in nature” is the criteria, then I suppose it would be ok to store as much manure as you want at your house.

  19. That last comment feels like you’re setting me up to make a Sacramento joke.
    Too easy.
    I know what you’re saying. But unlimited piles of manure do not occur in nature. I’d guess that an enormous pile of manure or enormous collection of bee hives would break some other nuisance laws that are already on the books and less intrusive into people’s lives and property.

    Much like the noise restrictions and gun ranges.

  20. Once again…

    Do not post comments in all cap letters. It’s lazy and web etiquette considers it as shouting. Comments in all caps will be removed.

    Oh. They HAVE BEEN removed.

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