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Keith Farmer
05-29-2009, 12:52 PM
Since the term was used in my Postmodernism thread it seemed appropriate for this thread.

I heard this story earlier in the week. I have been waiting for corroborating information before discussing it. At any rate, here is a link to what may be the start of a very dangerous road if this goes the wrong way...


http://www.onenewsnow.com/Culture/Default.aspx?id=546112







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Franco
05-29-2009, 08:29 PM
I would call it Federal Secularism.

Talibanish would mean that this is some radical religion trying to snuff out other religions.

Maybe there is more to this story? The SDPD aren't exactly a bunch of jacklegged brown shirts.

YardleyLabs
05-29-2009, 09:26 PM
It's an interesting situation.

At what point does a home become a church? Churches, as with other group gathering places, are subject to zoning and safety regulation. How many members does it take meeting regularly for group religious activities to constitute a church? A parallel question, without the religious overtones, would be how much business has to be conducted in a home before it is considered a place of business and subject to applicable regulations? In this case the pastor has been holding regular, organized religious meetings in his home for five years. Attendance ranges from 5-27 with an average of about 15 and meetings are held on a regularly scheduled basis every week.

The investigation was initiated in response to complaints from neighbors about parking problems on the small cul de sac where the pastor lives and holds his meetings. If the meetings constitute a church, then the use of the facility for that purpose would be subject to zoning restrictions including requirements for parking. The activities might also be considered a violation of residential zoning restrictions -- that is, you may not use your home as a business or school or child care facility or church without meeting regulatory requirements.

I routinely face similar situations in my house. I have a studio at the back of my house where I regularly do portraits for people. I operate a data center in my house and have people who pay me for hosting their web sites. I breed dogs and sell the puppies. Is my house actually a place of business? If so, I would need to cease my activities or obtain a zoning variance. In fact, I carefully limit what I do. I do not have staff at my house and only a small number of portrait customers. In my dog breeding activities, I conform to the state limit of 26 dogs per year max in an unlicensed facility. Beyond that, I work very hard not to alienate my neighbors since any one of them could cause difficulty with a complaint.

From reading the stories, I'm not sure the San Diego case represents a religious freedom issue unless you are suggesting that any general zoning and business licensure regulations should be waived in the case of churches. If so, I assume you would feel the same if a neighbor of yours established a mosque in their house to provide religious meeting space for a small congregation.

Martin
05-29-2009, 09:41 PM
I have held bible studies in our home as well as youth group events. The parking has been a problem at times. Out of respect for my neighbors I have shuttled folks form a puplic parking lot to our home.

If the sdpd singled them out for religous reasons they are putz. If not they need to go for the worls sereis parties, superbowl parties, amway parties and all the other gatherings that happen in private homes. If it is a law then everyone must follow it or fac the consequences.

Bob Gutermuth
05-29-2009, 09:46 PM
Considering the judiciary out west, especially the 9th Circuit Ct, I'll bet if this gets to court it goes all the way to SCOTUS. It has all the earmarks of a possible landmark case on the 1st Amendment.

Keith Farmer
05-30-2009, 06:32 AM
Considering the judiciary out west, especially the 9th Circuit Ct, I'll bet if this gets to court it goes all the way to SCOTUS. It has all the earmarks of a possible landmark case on the 1st Amendment


Kinda of my point here. This case should be watched...could be interesting.


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Gerry Clinchy
05-30-2009, 07:06 AM
I conform to the state limit of 26 dogs per year max in an unlicensed facility.

I believe the PA state law uses the 26 # unless you sell a dog. If you sell even one dog, you need to be licensed. That is what I have been told.

Even then, there are many municipalities that "trump" the state law by having their own local zoning restrictions on breeding or selling any dogs or cats. Even here in the Lehigh Valley, more rural in many instances than the Yardley area, most of the local municipalities have such restrictions. Example, owning more than 4 dogs or cats, and you are considered a "kennel". Move or get rid of the excess animal(s). Those restrictions usually hinge on acreage requirements. If you are a "kennel", you must have a minimum # of acres with your residence (most usually it is 5 acres in this area). If you breed any dogs or cats, you are then also automatically a "kennel." If you house your dogs outside in kennel runs at any time, then there are further restrictions on those structures (even if you have the 5 acres). Only one local township, that I know of, makes a distinction between "hobby breeders" and any other type of "kennel".

Just the RealtorŪ in me speaking here, as I have had several instances of re-locating dog people & put together a pretty comprehensive list of township ordinances WRT dogs.