[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Guilderland as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 6-11-1974 as Ch. 4, Art. III, of 1974 Code]
This article shall be known and may be cited as the "Ordinance Controlling, Regulating and Restricting the Keeping of Swine Within the Town of Guilderland, Albany County, New York."
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings ascribed to them:
- Whenever the linear distance of a structure or area from a lake, pond, stream, swamp, spring area, highway or dwelling is mentioned, it is intended to mean the shortest horizontal distance from the nearest point of the structure or area to the high-water mark of the lake, pond, stream, swamp or spring area, or to the highway line, or to the nearest point of the dwelling.
- DWELLING HOUSE
- Any building or structure established or maintained as temporary or permanent living quarters for human beings.
- Waste animal or vegetable matter from homes, institutions, restaurants, hotel kitchens and vegetable markets or fruit markets, and offal from abattoirs and packing houses.
- Any existing Town, county or state highway, road or street.
- Excrement from swine.
- Land, with or without buildings, owned by or under the control of any person, on which swine are housed, stabled or quartered.
- Pigs or hogs in excess of eight weeks of age.
- SWINE OR HOG FARM
- Any establishment that raises more than 10 hogs or raises any number of hogs for the purpose of sale, barter or exchange.
The provisions of this article controlling, regulating and restricting the keeping of swine within the Town have been adopted for the purpose of promoting the health and general welfare of the residents of the Town. It is intended to prescribe reasonable rules and regulations governing the raising of swine within the Town and to prohibit the establishment of any new swine or hog farms within the Town.
This article shall apply to all premises located in the Town upon which swine are being kept on June 19, 1962. The owner or operator of any such premises shall have 30 days after July 2, 1962, to make an application for a permit required by this article. The owner or operator of any such premises shall have a period of 60 days after making application for the permit within which to make the necessary arrangements to conform to the requirements of this article. The permit shall be granted only on the condition that the requirements of this article are complied with within 60 days after making the application.
No person, being the owner or occupant of any land or premises within the Town, shall use or permit the use of his land or premises for the keeping of swine without obtaining a permit therefor, as provided in this article.
No permit required by this article shall be issued to any person to keep swine within the Town except upon premises being used for the raising of swine on June 19, 1962.
The application for a permit required by this article shall be in writing, signed by the applicant, and shall state:
The name and address of the applicant.
The name and address of each partner, if the applicant is a partnership.
The name and address of each officer and director, if the applicant is a corporation.
A statement of the total acreage of the farm or premises.
The name and address of the owner or owners of the premises.
Each application for a permit required by this article shall be accompanied by a complete plan satisfactorily showing the layout of the farm, the location, size and arrangement of all brood and shelter houses, feeding areas, feeding platforms and pens and the location of any lakes, ponds, streams, swamps or spring areas, upon or adjacent thereto, if there are any. The application shall state the type of construction of the brood and shelter houses and of the feeding platforms. The plan shall show the linear distance to the nearest highway or road and to the nearest dwelling house other than that occupied by the applicant, or by such applicant's employees, if any, residing on the premises.
Each application for a permit required by this article shall be filed with the Town Clerk, who shall thereupon transmit the same to the Health Officer. The Health Officer shall, after investigation, transmit the application to the Town Board, together with his written approval or disapproval thereof, or recommendations pertaining thereto. All applications shall, after such investigation, be approved or rejected by the Town Board, after which the application shall be filed with the Town Clerk, and the applicant notified, in writing, by the Town Clerk of the action taken thereon.
The Town Clerk, upon the written application for a license required by this article and upon the approval of the application by the Health Officer and by the Town Board, shall issue the permit sought to become effective from the date thereof and to continue in force for the term specified therein, but in no event longer than through the last day of December next succeeding, for the use of the premises therein specified for the keeping of swine. The permit shall specify the maximum number of swine to be kept on the premises at any one time, which number shall be based upon the acreage and facilities existing at the date of application. Such permit shall not be transferable or assignable.
The issuance of a permit pursuant to this article shall not be deemed to waive compliance by the holder thereof or by the property owner with any statute of the state or ordinance or health regulation of the Town.
Density of swine population. The density of swine population shall not exceed 30 swine per acre based upon the total acreage of the premises, and in no case shall the total number of swine housed, stabled, quartered or herded exceed 500 on any one premises.
Fencing. All premises shall be so fenced that swine shall be effectively prevented from leaving or escaping from such premises.
Distance from highways and dwellings. All shelter houses and feeding areas shall be at least 200 feet from the nearest highway and 200 feet from the nearest existing dwelling house other than the dwelling house occupied by the person keeping the swine or by any of his employees. Shelter houses and feeding areas shall not be deemed to include barns used for farrowing purposes.
Location of brood houses, feeding areas and shelter houses. All brood and shelter houses, together with the feeding area, shall be located on high ground that is well-drained and which does not become subject to flooding from nearby streams or by accumulated rain or surface water. In no case shall any brooding house, shelter house or feeding area be located so that manure or garbage from any brooding house, shelter house or feeding area may be washed over the surface of the ground to any lake, stream, swamp or spring area.
Pens. Individual pens shall be provided for each brood sow at farrowing time. The minimum size of the farrowing pens should be 36 square feet for gilts and 49 square feet for large sows.
Construction of brood and shelter houses. All brood and shelter houses shall be so constructed that all parts thereof are accessible for cleaning.
Feeding areas. All feeding areas shall be properly fenced in order to permit swine to be excluded from such areas so that the areas can be effectively cleaned.
Whenever garbage is fed to swine, watertight feeding platforms shall be provided in such feeding areas. The feeding platforms when made of lumber shall be on skids and have a rail six inches to eight inches high to prevent the garbage from being shoved off the platform. Concrete platforms can be provided with curbs six inches to eight inches high. The total area of the feeding platform to be provided shall not be less than three square feet per swine based upon the maximum number of swine to be maintained. Each platform shall be sloped to permit drainage to one point so that liquids from the platform can be disposed of by means of a leaching bed. An adequate water supply shall be provided for washing and cleansing of the feeding platform, and such washing shall be disposed of beneath the surface of the ground through suitable leaching pits or subsurface absorption pits. After each daily feeding period, all refuse remaining on the platform together with that spilled on the surface of the ground shall be removed and shall be disposed of by one of the following methods:
Placed in a trench or pit in the ground with at least four inches of soil immediately thrown over the refuse.
Transported daily to the Town incinerator for burning.
Placed in a pile at least 200 feet from any dwelling, residence or highway with at least four inches of soil immediately thrown upon the surface.
The feeding platforms shall be cleaned immediately. Refuse from feeding pens or feeding platforms shall not be placed in piles or remain unburied or uncovered for periods exceeding 12 hours.
Handling of garbage collected for purpose of feeding swine. All containers used for transporting garbage through the Town shall be immediately cleaned after use thereof, and the cleaning water, together with the refuse therefrom, shall be disposed of as provided in Subsection H of this section. Garbage delivered to premises for the feeding of swine shall be forthwith placed upon the feeding platform or stored in airtight containers until it is fed to the swine as above provided. Garbage shall not be piled or stored upon the premises, except as provided in this section, for a period of more than one hour after delivery.
Immunization against hog cholera. All swine to which garbage is fed shall be immunized against hog cholera.
Disposal of manure. Manure, including animal droppings and bedding from all brood and shelter houses, shall be removed at least weekly and shall be properly and promptly disposed of. In the spring and fall months, disposal may consist of distributing it over farmlands that are used yearly for farm purposes. In cases where the manure from swine together with bedding is not distributed in the spring and fall months on lands used yearly for farm purposes, it shall then be disposed of as follows: It shall either be placed in pits and trenches and immediately covered with not less than four inches of earth or it shall be scattered over the surface of the ground and plowed under within 24 hours. In no case shall such manure, together with bedding, be placed or scattered over the surface of the ground within 1,000 feet of any residence other than that of the holder of a permit issued pursuant to this article or that of an employee of such holder residing on the holder's premises, unless the manure and bedding is plowed under within 24 hours after being so scattered.
The police officers of the Town, the Health Officer, the Chief Building Inspector and Zoning Coordinator and any other duly authorized agent or employee of the Town shall have the right at any reasonable time to enter upon premises on which swine are kept, and shall have the right at all times to inspect all parts of the premises.
If a police officer, Health Officer, Chief Building Inspector and Zoning Coordinator or any authorized representative of the Town finds that any premises upon which swine are kept is not being maintained in a clean and sanitary condition and in accordance with the provisions of this article, such facts shall be reported to the Town Board, and the Town Board may direct the Town Clerk to serve an order, in writing, upon the holder of the permit issued pursuant to this article or the person in charge of the premises, directing that the conditions therein specified be remedied within five days after the date of service of the order. If the conditions are not corrected after the expiration of the five-day period, the Town Board may cause a notice, in writing, to be served upon the holder of the permit or the person in charge of such premises, requiring the holder of the permit to appear before the Town Board at a time to be specified in the notice, and show cause why the permit issued pursuant to this article should not be revoked. The Town Board may, after a hearing at which the testimony of witnesses may be taken and the holder of the permit shall be heard, revoke the permit if the Town Board shall find that the premises are not being maintained in a clean and sanitary condition or if the Town Board finds that any provision of this article has been violated or for such other further and sufficient cause. Upon the revocation of the permit, the premises shall forthwith cease to be used for the keeping of swine, and all swine shall be removed therefrom.
Application for the renewal of any permit issued pursuant to this article shall be filed with the Town Clerk on or before the first day of December next preceding the expiration of the permit. Upon the approval of the application for a renewal of the permit by the Health Officer and the Town Board, the Town Clerk shall issue a renewal permit which shall become effective upon the expiration of the prior permit and continue in force for the term specified therein, but in no event longer than for a period of one year. The renewal permit shall not be transferred or assigned.
Any person who violates any provision of this article shall be guilty of a violation against this article and shall be punishable as set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article III. In addition, the violation of this article or of any of the provisions thereof shall subject the person violating this article to a civil penalty not to exceed $250, and, when a violation of this article or any of its provisions is continuous, each 24 hours thereof shall constitute a separate and distinct violation, which penalty shall be recovered by the Town in a civil action. The application of the penalties prescribed in this section or any prosecution for the violation of the provisions of this article shall not be deemed to prevent the revocation of any permit or the forcible removal of conditions prohibited by this article.
[Adopted 12-7-2010 by L.L. No. 4-2010]
Editor’s Note: This local law also repealed former Art. II, Control of Dogs and Cats, adopted 9-14-1982 by L.L. No. 5-1982 (Subpart 16 of the 1974 Code), as amended. Local Law No. 4-2010 also provided that it would take effect when filed in the Office of the Secretary of the State of New York but would not be implemented before 1-1-2011.
The Town Board of the Town of Guilderland finds that licensed and unlicensed dogs running at large and exhibiting other uncontrolled behavior have caused physical harm to persons, damage to property and have created nuisances within the Town of Guilderland. The purpose of this article is to protect the health, safety and well-being of persons and property by imposing restrictions on the keeping and running at large of dogs within the Town of Guilderland, to provide for the care and disposition of abandoned, lost, strayed, homeless or unwanted animals and to establish fees for the issuance of dog licenses that are consistent with the rights and privileges of dog owners and the rights and privileges of other citizens of the Town of Guilderland.
This article is enacted pursuant to the provisions of Article 7, Chapter 59; Part T of the Agriculture and Markets Law and the Municipal Home Rule Law of the State of New York. In the event of any conflict between the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law and this article, the provisions of the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law shall take precedence. This article may, pursuant to the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law and § 10 of the New York State Municipal Home Rule Law, be more stringent than the standards set forth in the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law, and supersede the Agriculture and Markets Law to the extent such Agriculture and Markets Law is silent upon any matter herein regulated, stated, or required.
The title of this article shall be the "Animal Control Law of the Town of Guilderland."
As used in this article, the following words shall have the following respective meanings:
- ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER
- A person or persons appointed by the Town of Guilderland for the purpose of enforcing this article or Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
- Male and female, licensed and unlicensed, members of the species canis familiaris.
- FECAL MATTER
- All feces, excrement, manure, dung or solid waste matter discharged by a dog.
- To provide food or shelter to any dog.
- IDENTIFICATION TAG
- A tag issued by the Town of Guilderland which sets forth an identification number, the names of the Town of Guilderland and the State of New York, contact information, including the telephone number, for the Town of Guilderland and any other information deemed appropriate by the Town of Guilderland.
- The person or persons entitled to claim lawful custody and possession of a dog who is responsible for purchasing the license for such dog unless the dog is or has been lost, and such loss was promptly reported to an Animal Control Officer and a reasonable search has been made. If a dog is not licensed, the term "owner" shall designate and cover any person or persons, firm, association, or corporation, who or which at any time owns or has custody or control of, harbors, or is otherwise responsible for any dog which is kept, brought or comes within the Town of Guilderland. Any person owning or harboring a dog for a period of one week prior to the filing of any complaint charging a violation of this article shall be deemed to be the owner of such dog for purposes of this article. In the event that the "owner" of any dog found to be in violation of this article shall be under 18 years of age, the head of the household in which said minor resides shall be deemed to have custody and control of said dog and shall be responsible for any acts of the said dog in violation of this article.
- POLICE OFFICER
- Any police officer employed by the Town of Guilderland and any other police officers or peace officers under contract to the Town of Guilderland or having jurisdiction within the Town of Guilderland.
- RUN AT LARGE
- To be in a public place or on private land without the knowledge, consent, and approval of the owner of such lands.
- The Town of Guilderland.
It shall be unlawful for any owner of any dog in the Town to permit or allow such dog to:
Run at large. Any dog that is not on private land with the knowledge, consent and approval of the owner of such lands must be on a leash and under the full control of such owner or person. For the purpose of this section, a dog or dogs hunting in the company of a hunter or hunters shall be considered as accompanied by its owner and may be off leash. This subsection shall not apply in the case of a dog kept, maintained or harbored in any area of the Town zoned for agricultural use under the provisions of any ordinance or local law of the Town; provided, however, that no such owner shall permit or allow such dog to attack, chase, harass, molest, worry, injure or kill any dogs, cats or other household pets, deer, cattle, horses, poultry or other livestock.
[Amended 1-17-2012 by L.L. No. 2-2012]
Engage in habitual and loud howling, barking, crying or whining or conduct as to unreasonably and habitually disturb the comfort or repose of any person other than the owner of such dog that lasts continually for a period of 10 minutes or intermittently for a period of 30 minutes.
Uproot, dig, or otherwise damage any vegetables, lawns, flowers, garden beds, or other property without the consent or approval of the owner thereof.
Chase, jump upon or at or otherwise harass any person in such manner as to reasonably cause intimidation or fear or to put such person in reasonable apprehension of bodily harm.
Habitually chase, run alongside of or bark at motor vehicles, motorcycles or bicycles while on a public street, highway, or place, or upon private property without the consent or approval of the owner of such property.
Create a nuisance by defecating, urinating or digging on public property, or on private property without the consent or approval of the owner of such property.
Be off the owner's premises unrestrained by a leash, unless in a designated Town dog park.
[Amended 1-17-2012 by L.L. No. 2-2012]
Deposit any fecal matter on any Town public roadway, gutter, sidewalk, public park or other public area, or private property without the consent of the landowner, unless such fecal matter is immediately removed from the property by gathering said fecal matter in a suitable container and disposing of it in a safe and sanitary manner. The provisions of this Subsection H shall not apply to any individual who requires the use of a Seeing Eye dog, or any disabled persons who, because of their disability, cannot adhere to its requirements.
Be at the Western Turnpike Golf Course at any time.
[Added 1-17-2012 by L.L. No. 2-2012]
All premises occupied or used by dogs shall be kept in a clean, safe and sanitary condition. Failure to provide adequate food, water or space shall subject dogs to seizure and confinement. For purposes of this section, "premises" shall include any motor vehicle occupied by a dog, and "adequate" shall mean sufficient for age, size and number of dogs on the premises. Failure to provide adequate food, water or shelter shall subject the owners or harborers of dogs to the enforcement provisions of Article 26 of the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law.
License required. All dogs in the Town must be licensed with the Town Clerk by the age of four months in a form prescribed by the Town Clerk and are required to present a current certificate of rabies at the time of licensing or the renewal of an existing license showing that the dog has been vaccinated to prevent rabies or, in lieu thereof, a statement certified by a licensed veterinarian stating that because of old age or other reason, the life of the dog would be endangered by the administration of the vaccine.
Expiration of license. All dog licenses will be for a period of one year and will expire at the end of the month one year from the date of issue.
Fees for licensing of dogs. The fee for a spayed or neutered dog and the fee for an unspayed or unneutered dog shall be as set forth on a fee schedule maintained by the Town Clerk, which fees shall include the New York State surcharge for the purpose of carrying out animal population control. Such fees are subject to being reviewed by the Town Board periodically and may be changed by a resolution of the Town Board, if deemed necessary.
Enumeration fee. If the Town Board determines the need for dog enumeration, such a fee, as set forth on a fee schedule maintained by the Town Clerk, will be assessed to all dogs found unlicensed or renewed at the time the enumeration is conducted.
Purebred license. The Town will not issue purebred or kennel licenses. All dogs shall be licensed individually as per the fee system stated above.
Service dogs. Any guide, service, hearing or detection dog shall be licensed in the same manner as any other dog, but there shall be no fee for such licensing.
Animal shelter. Any dog seized or impounded at the Town animal shelter may also be licensed and issued an identification tag by the Town animal shelter.
Purchase, renewal of license. All dog licenses may be purchased by visiting the Town offices or by regular mail. If licensing or renewing a license by mail, the appropriate fee must accompany the forms.
Use of fees. All fees shall be used only for administering and enforcing this article and for the controlling of dogs and enforcing the provisions of Article 7 of the New York State Agricultural Law.
Senior reduced fee. In lieu of the fee imposed by Subsection C of this section, a dog owner who is 65 years of age or older shall be charged a reduced dog license fee as set forth on a fee schedule maintained by the Town Clerk. In the event that the dog is owned by more than one person, each such owner must be 65 years of age or older for this reduced fee to apply.
Failure to license. The local penalty for failure to license a dog shall be $150.
Fees nonrefundable. There will be no refund of fees.
Notification requirement. The owner of any licensed dog shall notify the Town Clerk:
Any dog harbored within the Town which is owned by a resident of New York City and licensed by the City of New York, or which is owned by a nonresident of New York State and licensed by a jurisdiction outside the State of New York, shall, for a period of 30 days, be exempt from the licensing and identification provisions of this article.
No license is required for a dog confined to a public or private hospital devoted solely to the treatment of sick animals, or confined for the purpose of research by any college or other educational or research institution.
No license is required for dogs confined to the premises of any person, firm or corporation engaged in the business of breeding or raising dogs for profit and licensed as a Class A dealer under the Federal Laboratory Animal Welfare Act.
Any dog impounded and made available for adoption under the provisions of § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, and any other animal seized under the provisions of § 120-23 of this article and not redeemed in accordance with the provisions for redemption of dogs under § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, may be released from custody for adoption upon payment to the Town Clerk or Town animal shelter of a fee as set forth on a fee schedule maintained by the Town Clerk and upon entering into a written agreement with the Town which includes the following terms and conditions:
That the dog has been spayed or neutered as evidenced by a certificate signed by a licensed veterinarian or an affidavit signed by the owner showing that the dog has been spayed or neutered, unless such certificate or affidavit is already on file with the Town Clerk or Animal Control Officer. In lieu of the spay or neuter certificate, an owner may present a statement certified by a licensed veterinarian stating that such veterinarian has examined the dog and found that because of old age or other reason, the life of the dog would be endangered by spaying or neutering; or
That the person intending to adopt a dog which has not yet reached sexual maturity has executed a written agreement with the Town, or its designee, to have the dog spayed or neutered within 30 days of the dog reaching six months of age as set forth in the written agreement.
For purposes of this section, the age of the animal at the time of adoption shall be determined by the Town animal shelter or Animal Control Officer that releases the animal for adoption, and such age shall be clearly written on the agreement by the Town, or its designee, prior to the agreement being executed by the person adopting the animal.
The revenues from such adoption fees shall be used only for administering and enforcing this article and for the controlling of dogs and enforcing the provisions of Article 7 of the New York State Agricultural Law.
This article shall be enforced by the Animal Control Officers and police officers, and such officers shall have all of the powers conferred upon Animal Control Officers by Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law of the State of New York.
The Animal Control Officers or any police officer may seize:
Any unlicensed dog whether on or off the owner's premises;
Any dog not wearing an identification tag and which is not on the owner's premises, and
The Animal Control Officer or police officer observing a violation of this article in his or her presence may issue and serve an appearance ticket for such violation.
Any person who observes a dog in violation of this article may file a written complaint under oath with a police officer, Animal Control Officer, or Justice of the Town, specifying the nature of the violation, the date thereof, a description of the dog and the name and a residence, if known, of the owner of such dog. Such complaint may serve as a basis for enforcing the provisions of this article. Upon receipt of a written, signed complaint, the Animal Control Officer shall notify the owner or harborer of the dog, by letter by certified mail or in person, of the objectionable conduct. Failure to accept such letter by the owner or harborer of the dog does not invalidate the notification.
Upon reasonable belief by the Animal Control Officer that there has been a violation of this article or Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law of the State of New York, such Animal Control Officer shall issue an appearance ticket requiring the owner or harborer of the dog to appear before a Town Justice.
No person shall hinder, resist or oppose any Animal Control Officer or police officer authorized to administer or enforce the provisions of this article in the performance of such officer's duties under this article.
A daily boarding fee and a fee for seizure and impoundment of dogs in violation of this article or the laws of the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Law are as set forth on a fee schedule maintained by the Town Clerk.
Upon request or instruction from a police officer, the Animal Control Officer may seize any animal found abandoned or not properly cared for or lost, strayed, homeless or unwanted and cause the same to be examined by a licensed veterinary surgeon and destroyed pursuant to the provisions of § 374 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, or treated if such animal is found upon such examination to be not so maimed, diseased, disabled or infirm as to be unfit for any useful purpose; provided, however, that the Town shall not be liable for any fees or expenses incurred in connection with any repair or treatment of such animal by such veterinary surgeon unless such repair or treatment shall be approved and authorized by the Chief Fiscal Officer of the Town. In addition to this, the owner of any dog that is destroyed under the provisions of this article, whether destroyed by an Animal Control Officer or police officer or released to an authorized humane society or veterinarian, shall not be entitled to any compensation, and no action shall be maintainable thereafter to recover the value of such dog or any other type of damage.
Any person convicted of a violation of this article shall be deemed to have committed a violation and shall be subject to a civil penalty as set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article III. The penalties herein provided shall be in addition to those prescribed in § 119 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.