A request by a citizen beekeeper for an updated ordinance will be further discussed by the Enterprise City Council.
At the June 1 meeting Enterprise City Council President Turner Townsend said that review of a city ordinance prohibiting honey bee keeping and honey harvesting within city limits should be a topic of further discussion due to the “evolving trend of urban farming and beekeeping.”
At issue is a request by Alabama Bee Keepers Association member Richard Woodham to the council at the meeting June 1.
Woodham, who is working towards his master’s certification in beekeeping, told the council that currently Enterprise has an ordinance prohibiting cultivating honey bees in the city limits is prohibited unless it is zoned for agriculture. There is some allowance for short term situations to include 4-H projects.
The Wiregrass Beekeepers Association has written guidelines to have bees in the city of limits of Dothan, Woodham said. They would like to do the same with the city of Enterprise. “As a beekeeper I would not recommend allowing honey bees in the city without the appropriate guideline,” he added.
Woodham said that as part of educating the public about the function and importance of bees he speaks to interested local groups and civic clubs about the environmental and economic impact of honey bees.
Honey bees are responsible for pollinating one third of all the food eaten, Woodham told the council, adding that the bee is the only insect that produces food that humans eat. Promoting beekeeping in the city will have a positive impact on the local economy, he added.
The next meeting of the Enterprise City Council is July 6 at Enterprise City Hall. A work session begins at 5 p.m. A voting meeting begins at 6 p.m. Both meetings are open to the public.