Save the Hunter Family Farm

 
Raised: $1,647.00
Goal: $3,000.00
 
 
 

Created by

Amy Lynn Crabtree Campbell

577 Friends

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What would you do if your life dream was ripped away by nosy neighbors who decided that your legally zoned lifestyle was an affront to them? This is what happened recently in Antwerp... more

 
 
 
 
 
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Updated posted by Amy Lynn Crabtree Campbell 7 months ago

Hunter Family Farm update: If you would like to be part of revising the ordinance that is the basis for the neighbor's harassment of the Hunter Family Farm, the next workshop is this Thursday, October 19th at 7:00 at the Antwerp Twp Hall. The township will be unveiling a draft revised ordinance composed of input from the last community ordinance workshop and then hashing that out in greater detail. This would be the ideal time for people with animals or bees to come out and help hone this redesigned ordinance into something workable. After this second revision, it will move on to the planning commission meeting in October.

 
 
 

Updated posted by Amy Lynn Crabtree Campbell 7 months ago

Heads up, supporters of Hunter Family Farm. This is Wednesday, September 4, 2013 at the Antwerp Township Hall. From David Hunter:

There is a township planning meeting this Wednesday at 7pm. Last week, at the planning workshop, both neighbors who have been complaining showed up. If you have animals in the township, this affects you. They are discussing limits on all zoning areas R-3 to Ag. We are only one voice - more are needed. Farmers from other areas have come in support and we really need the voice of Antwerp township people too. We are fighting for this and know we have so much support and we thank everyone for that. If you can't come then please send someone for you.

 
 
 

Updated posted by Amy Lynn Crabtree Campbell 7 months ago

ReasonTV visited the Hunter Family Farm and made this short video. You can see it here, it is approximately 5 1/2 minutes long.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yUoJ7INz-gQ

 
 
 
1 - 3 of 13 Updates
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Created by Amy Lynn Crabtree Campbell on July 24, 2013

What would you do if your life dream was ripped away by nosy neighbors who decided that your legally zoned lifestyle was an affront to them? This is what happened recently in Antwerp Township, MI.


Kelly & Dave have put their heart and soul into their farm in Antwep Township. They bought a run-down farm and restored it to glory. The property is zoned R-1, which allows farm animals, and they have honeybees, some chickens and turkeys, a horse, and two donkeys. Two neighbors complained to the Antwerp Township inspectors about a number of phantom complaints, including one of Kelly's honeybees stealing water from the neighbor's property. Having been inundated with such complaints by these two, the township told Kelly and Dave this week that they must get rid of most of their animal and poultry, except a horse and one donkey, because they have "too many animals". We are not sure how this is possible, since Kelly and David cleared the acquisition of each animal with the township before acquiring it.

Township inspectors have been to their farm numerous times and found no infractions or violations. In fact, during one visit they stood directly next to a dung pile for some time and did not notice it by scent or by insect activity. They only noticed it was a dung pile when Kelly brought it to their attention. Now, having reversed themselves on their prior rulings, Antwerp Township is telling my friends that "they brought this on themselves".

How, exactly? By complying with every condition placed upon them? Apparently by not giving in to the bullying of two nosy neighbors, this is how "they brought this on themselves". Additionally, not once did either of these neighbors come talk to Kelly and David themselves. They were apparently very troubled by the small hobby farm next door, but not enough to come and talk to their neighbors about it. They went right to the local government, which has said all along that Kelly and Dave have been within the law. Now they suddenly are not. Why?

I think it's a shame when two people can bully a township into closing a farm that has done nothing to detract from the quality of life enjoyed by their neighbors. No other neighbors, and there are several, have complained. Perhaps these two thought that if anyone actually bought the run-down farm and put farm animals where it is zoned for farm animals, they could complain until they got their way. So it appears to go in Antwerp Township.

My heart breaks for Kelly and Dave and their two young sons. They both work regular jobs, and the farm is not a significant source of income for them. They simply wish to live a farming lifestyle, and until their two neighbors decided they shouldn't, they were doing just that with the blessing of Antwerp Township.

They have been told they can apply for a variance from the township, but that the township doesn't have to approve it. When Kelly asked what the variance would be for, the inspector could not tell her. Why?

I am asking for your help in donating to their legal fees to fight this injustice, so that they may keep their animals.
 
 
 
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5 Comments

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Check out the Michigan "Right to Farm" state law. It was made specifically to address these situations.

posted by Nate Bratton 7 months ago

Have they contacted Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund? I highly recommend it!

posted by Katie Shank 8 months ago

Is there a Facebook page where we can follow the goings on and be better able to share and get support for them?

posted by Stacy Loew 8 months ago

Contacting local media outlets can have a significant impact. It puts a little heat on the townships collar and is a good story of a family building their American dream, only to be unjustly stripped of their rights!

posted by James Medlin 8 months ago

My suggestion is to contact their county Farm Bureau and their local Michigan Farm Bureau Regional Representative. MFB has been very successful helping people with local governmental issues.

posted by Cheryl Strautz 8 months ago

1 - 5 of 5 Comments
 

Recent Donations (48)

$1,647 raised by 48 people in 9 months.

$50.00

Stephanie Mills

2 months ago

 
 

I just read the story of your plight and although I don't know you, I have several friends that own 'hobby farms' and they put heart and soul into their farms and the animal inhabitants. It would certainly be devastating for any government entity to come in and try to take everything they have worked for away. It is unfair and I hope that's exactly the way the judge will see it! Best of luck in the fight.

 

$10.00

William Marean

7 months ago

 
 

$15.00

Anonymous

7 months ago

 

$25.00

Anonymous

7 months ago

 

$10.00

Rebecca Haley

7 months ago

 
 

This an affront to justice. Cronyism in government cannot be allowed to continue. This ignorant, arrogant, entitled neighbor must be defeated.

 

$25.00

Matthew Lins

7 months ago

 
 

I stand with you

 

$10.00

Mandy McClure

7 months ago

 
 

I hope to have a hobby farm of my own some day. Best of Luck to you guys!!!!

 

$20.00

Bruce Wilkison

7 months ago

 
 

$50.00

Danielle

7 months ago

 
 

$25.00

Kyle Mohney

7 months ago

 
 

1-10 of 48 donations

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