Policy Summary

This law establishes supplemental use regulations for community gardens. Topics addressed include size limitations, environmental permit requirements, noise limitations, maintenance responsibilities, signage and use of chemicals, etc. Limitations of this law include that it prohibits on-site sales and expressly provides that "[c]ommunity gardens shall not be considered as principal agricultural uses and shall not be construed so as to qualify for agricultural tax exemptions afforded by the local, state, or federal government."

NOTE: Ord. No. 2020-07, § 2, adopted April 28, 2020 repealed former § 10-6.816 and enacted new provisions. The version of the law analyzed herein reflects the version in effect prior to the 2020 changes. This database also includes analysis of language subsequent to the 2020 changes as a separate entry. The "view law" link above will take you to the current version of the law. To see the repealed language, please see Ord. No. 2020-07, § 2.

Background Information

State Florida
Jurisdiction Name Leon County
Jurisdiction Type County,
Population Size 200,000-800,000
Legal Strategies
  • Expressly allows something
  • Requires something, sets standards
Reach Community-wide
Food System Category Grow; Get;

Policy Details

Refers to priority populations?

Emergency management?
Health-related linkage?

Environmental linkage?

Purpose refers to a goal of avoiding adverse environmental impacts (§ 10-6.816(1)). Also states that an environmental permit may be necessary for gardens larger than half an acre (§ 10-6.816 (4) (b)); if pesticides or other chemicals are used, they are used in accordance with their labels and other law (§ 10-6.816 (4) (e)); and gardens must follow other applicable environmental management standards (§ 10-6.816 (4) (f)).

Economic linkage?

Law forbids on-site sales or wholesale sale of produce/crops, but expressly allows sales at farmers' markets. § 10-6.816 (4) (g).

Includes findings?

Has a stated intent or purpose?

"To allow groups of people, to grow food crops and/or non-food ornamental crops on a not-for-profit basis, except as expressly provided herein, without creating adverse environmental impact or land use incompatibilities." § 10-6.816(1). Law does not apply to "any garden established as an accessory use to a lawfully established principal residential use providing for the personal enjoyment and consumption" for the person who owns the property where the garden is. § 10-6.816(2). See also § 10-6.801: "The purpose of this division is to provide supplementary development regulations for specific uses requiring additional development standards."

Includes definitions?

§ 10-6.102 (but does not define "community garden").

Addresses implementation?

With respect specifically to community gardens of greater than one-half acre in size, any person wishing to establish the same "shall be required to contact the department of development support and environmental management to determine whether an environmental permit shall be required as a prerequisite. The county may limit or restrict the establishment of a community garden due to the existence of environmentally sensitive areas on the property." (§ 10-6.816 (4) (b).) In addition, more generally, Division II of Article VI, Zoning, addresses various administrative details with respect to issues such as permits, certificates and licenses etc. However, the provisions do not appear specific to section 10-6.816. See §§ 10-6.202 - .206.

Enforcement provisions?

The specified penalties are limited to cost of enforcing compliance. (""If the county administrator or designee finds that any of the provisions of this article are being violated, he shall notify in writing the person responsible for such violation, indicating the nature of the violation and ordering the action necessary to correct it. The county administrator or designee shall order the discontinuance of illegal uses of land...discontinuance of any illegal work being done; or shall take any other action authorized by this article to ensure compliance with or to prevent violation of its provisions. All expenses, including attorney fees, associated with required remedial action shall be the obligation of the party in violation. "") See § 10-6.203 (b).

Evaluation component?

Requires extra investment?

Code context and ordinance history

Section 10-6.816 is located in Chapter 10 - Land Development Code / Article VI. - Zoning / Division 8. - Supplementary Regulations For Specific Uses. History: Ord. No. 09-03, § 2, 1-15-09; Ord. No. 12-17, § 2, 12-11-12.


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