Florida Couple Sues City for Banning Vegetable Gardens


Naturally, the city is claiming that the ban is completely reasonable, asserting that contrary to what the couple says, there is no “fundamental right” to have vegetable gardens in one’s front yard. Perhaps not, but maybe someone should remind them that there is the right to do what you want with your property so long as it does not harm anyone or encroach on others’ property:

The couple sued, and at a hearing Wednesday their attorney said the ban violates the Florida Constitution in several ways, including improper limits on their private property rights and violation of the equal protection clause by singling out vegetables over other plants.

“We’re not saying you can do anything you want on your property,” attorney Ari Bargil told Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Monica Gordo. “We are simply saying you can grow vegetables on your property and that is protected by the Constitution.”

Richard Sarafan, attorney for Miami Shores, said the new zoning rule was not irrational and treated all homeowners the same: their front yards should be covered with grass, sod or a “living ground cover” not further defined. It’s no problem, he said, to have a vegetable garden in the backyard.

“There certainly is not fundamental right to grow vegetables in your front yard,” Sarafan said. “Aesthetics and uniformity are legitimate government purposes. Not every property can lawfully be used for every purpose.”

“Richard Sarafan, attorney for Miami Shores, said the new zoning rule was not irrational and treated all homeowners the same: their front yards should be covered with grass, sod or a ‘living ground cover’ not further defined. It’s no problem, he said, to have a vegetable garden in the backyard.

‘There certainly is not fundamental right to grow vegetables in your front yard,’ Sarafan said. ‘Aesthetics and uniformity are legitimate government purposes. Not every property can lawfully be used for every purpose.’

Carroll, who attended the hearing, said the couple sought to grow produce using organic practices, such as no use of pesticides. He said he had never gotten a complaint from a neighbor in all the years he tended the garden, which grew some 75 varieties of vegetables.

‘It’s important that we have the right to do something on our own property,’ Carroll said. ‘We’re just trying to grow vegetables.'”

Source: Fox News



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