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New rules allow livestock, with limitations, in Enumclaw city limits

Prompted by the recent annexation of land along Enumclaw’s western edge, the city has drafted new regulations for the keeping of livestock.

Large animals have historically been banned in the city; now, with specific prosvisions, cows, horses and the like are permitted. Approved in August by members of the City Council, the new regulations went into effect Sept. 6.

The need for change came with the Harkness Annexation, which recently added approximately 300 acres to the city roster, stretching mostly along 244th Avenue. Many residents of the area keep livestock which would have suddenly been outlawed with annexation. They made their concerns very clear during public testimony, offered as part of the annexation process.

To meet the desires of all concerned, the city began drafting a new livestock ordinance as the annexation process worked its way through city government and the county’s Boundary Review Board.

The city’s goal was to adopt regulations that were no more restrictive than King County’s, according to Community Development Director Erika Shook. She said residents who could have been impacted have largely been supportive of the city’s new ordinance.

“King County’s rules are much more complicated,” Shook said.

Just because livestock is now allowed in the city, Shook explained, that doesn’t mean anyone will be able to keep large animals. No livestock is allowed, for example, on a parcel smaller than a half-acre. As the size of the parcel increases, more animals are allowed.

Those who fancy chickens are well served by the city ordinance. Where they could keep up to four birds previously, they are now allowed six.

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