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Farmington Planning Commission approves draft for dog kennel within city limits

Farmington City Hall. File photo

Farmington dog owners may soon board pets at a new doggy daycare within the city limits.

Farmington Planning Commission discussed and reviewed a draft city ordinance for dog kennels during the Feb. 13 monthly meeting.

The new small business would provide services for dog owners with daycare, boarding and walking services. A new business has shown interest in opening a new doggy daycare business in the Farmington Mall at the address of 923 Eighth St., located on the city's south edge of town off Highway 3.

"The way the current ordinance is written if you keep more than three dogs, you have to register for a kennel license, however, the code also stipulates that we only allow for those in our agricultural A-1 district currently," city planning manager Tony Wippler said.

This type of commercial kennel is becoming more prevalent in many communities, Wippler said.

Back in November the commission discussed amending the current kennel city ordinance at the November meeting. The commission was generally in favor of city staff developing a draft ordinance and bringing it forward for initial review. The commission reviewed two ordinances dealing with the city's kennel licensing program.

"It brings us more in line with what other communities are doing as far as commercial kennels, doggy daycares or animal daycares," Wippler said.

According to city code, a kennel is defined as a structure or premise where three or more domestic animals are bred for sale, boarded, trained or kept. The code allows for them to be located in an A-1 or agricultural zoning district as a conditional use, Wippler said.

Farmington Mall is located with the highway business district or B-1 zoning district.

"The first proposed amendments to Chapter 2 of Title 6, and it is a fairly non-substantive ordinance that specifies a conditional use permit along with a license is required to operate a commercial kennel, as well as a residential hobby kennel," Wippler said.

The other amendment would change the current city dog kennel code.

"This portion of that ordinances does include some pretty big changes as to what we currently have in the current code provision," Wippler said.

One change would remove the word "dog" from the chapter, amending the definition to a commercial kennel. It would allow for three or more dogs or 10 cats or more and ferrets that would be commercially kept, boarded or trained. The second definition added was a residential hobby kennel.

The new small business owner must obtain a yearly license. The conditional use permit allows for a commercial kennel in the B-1 zone and requires a conditional use permit for a residential hobby kennel within the A-1 zone.The city ordinance requires the kennel license be posted on site and the kennel be kept clean and sanitary at all times.

It also allows for the city to inspect the premises during reasonable hours.

The code also provides standards for commercial kennels for outdoor play areas, sound proofing, and ventilation and air temperatures if the kennel is located within a multi-tenant building among other requirements.

Commissioner Steve Kuyper questioned the enforcement if the business did not comply.

Wippler said the owners have to get approval for the permits and the city has the authority to remove the license, or if necessary, remove the dogs, according to the city ordinance.

"We are not looking to open this up within residential neighborhoods," Wippler said.

"It think it makes good sense to bring new business and have folks keeping their business in Farmington instead of north," said commissioner Lydia Bjorge.

Rotty asked about the commercial building's soundproofing, odor and disposal of animal feces. Wippler said rules would be followed, as he will keep in communication with the developer and business owner of the new doggy daycare.

Area residents and neighbors are welcome to attend the public hearing on March 13 inside Farmington City Hall. Comments and questions can be addressed before the planning commission forwards the item on to the Farmington City Council for final ratification.