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La Canada Moves to Tighten Horse Law

October 10, 1985

A long-debated proposed ordinance that would place tighter controls on horse possession in La Canada Flintridge was approved Tuesday by the city Planning Commission and sent on to the City Council.

Passed by a 4-0 vote, with one commissioner absent, the proposed ordinance was previously debated at several emotional public hearings where arguments for the rights of horse owners clashed with the complaints of neighbors upset over flies, dust and odors from the horses.

The most recent version appears to satisfy most of the concerns of both sides and would replace the more lax Los Angeles County regulations under which the city now operates.

Another public hearing will be held when the City Council takes up the issue, probably in late November, city officials said.

Major changes would limit to five the number of horses that could be kept at a residence before a permit would be required, allow up to two horses to be boarded for non-commercial purposes, prohibit horses from being kept on lots smaller than 15,000 square feet and establish specific maintenance standards to cut down on dust, flies and odors.

Although the proposed ordinance covers the keeping of other animals--donkeys, mules, other equines, cattle, sheep and goats--horses are its focus.

Horse owners had worried that the new regulations would be too restrictive. Their complaining neighbors insisted that the city do something about those people who are keeping too many horses or are not cleaning up after their animals.

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