Urban farm causing 'stink' between neighbors
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An East Austin neighborhood dispute has found its way to City Hall.
Some neighbors of HausBar Farms have complained to city officials with concerns that the urban farm is overstepping city regulations.
Dorsey Barger started HausBar Farms three years ago with a vision for an environmentally friendly, sustainable farming operation.
“I went to the Texas Department of Agriculture, got licensed, got inspected," Barger said.
She says raising and slaughtering chickens is part of her business and she has obtained all of the permits which allow her to do so.
That hasn’t stopped Louis Polanco, a neighbor, from complaining about the smell.
"Mr. Polanco has been complaining about this awful smell from our slaughter,” Barger said. “We have not composted any material from our slaughter in three months."
Polanco lives across the street from the farm. At the end of last year, he and other neighbors complained to city officials about a terrible smell.
"She is slaughtering the chickens and making compost out of them," Polanco said.
For the 80 year-old neighbor, this dispute is about more than an unpleasant smell. He doesn't want industry operating in his neighborhood.
"The main thing is that it is not commercial,” Polanco said. “It is residential."
The city says there is a joint investigation involving several city departments into whether the farm is doing anything wrong. They're reviewing the case and will provide more information on a later date.