Buzz about backyard beekeeping

By Grace Jones | posted on December 19, 2019

A NEW local law to allow City of Albany residents to keep bees as a hobby in residential areas will go to public comment after councillors voted in favour of the law on Tuesday night.

Council voted 12 to one earlier this week to make the Animals Local Law and give notice of statewide public notice two years after receiving a petition to allow residents to keep bees in residential areas.

Councillors Chris Thomson and Greg Stocks moved and seconded the motion.

Cr Thomson said making the law would be a significant red tape reduction.

“This is a fantastic motion, particularly about the bees,” he said.

“I think people move to Albany to get back to basics and live a more organic life.”

Debate kicked off after Councillor Paul Terry sought to add that an addition be made to section 8.2 that would require all poultry feed to be stored in vermin proof containers.

Councillor Robbie Sutton was vocal in his opposition to the amendment.

“Who’s going to police this?” he said.

“Are we going to make people who mulch their garden with hay and pea straw keep it in vermin proof containers?

“Talk about creating red tape. This is ridiculous. Local government gone crazy.

“What about people who give their chooks veggie scraps? Will they need to be stored in vermin proof containers?”

Cr Terry said it was common sense to store poultry feed items such as “chook pellets”.

Cr Thomson said “distributing scraps, isn’t storing scraps”.

Cr Sutton was the only member to vote against the motion.