Worcester County Introduces New Legislation for Poultry Farms - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Worcester County Introduces New Legislation for Poultry Farms

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SNOW HILL, Md.- Worcester County Commissioners introduce new poultry farm legislation.

Poultry industry regulations were put in place by Wicomico and Somerset Counties within the past couple years. Now, Worcester County is joining them.

New legislation proposed by Worcester County Commissioners will alter 50-year-old regulations to meet new chicken growing standards.

Some changes this new bill includes are 200 foot setbacks of chicken houses, limiting the amount of houses per parcel to 8 and adding vegetative buffers between chicken houses and neighboring properties.

Former Worcester County Commissioner and Owner of Oak Shelter Farm said he doesn't believe this new bill will have much of an impact. He said this is something that should've been introduced years ago.

"If the idea of the bill was to limit poultry production in Worcester County eventually it will do that. If the idea was to stop it now, it's not going to do anything because the train already left the station."


Kathy Phillips Coast-Keeper at Assateague Coastal Trust said she thinks this bill is something that needs to be pushed forward. But, she would like to see some changes made to it.

"One way that that can be dealt with is to adopt a health ordinance into the county's zoning code. Health ordinances go beyond just set backs they look at the cumulative impacts. They look at the density. They look at the intensity of the industry," Phillips said.  

Worcester County will be holding a public hearing to discuss the bill on April 25th. 

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