Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 111576
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File Number: 111576 File Type: Ordinance Status: Amended
Version: 0 Reference: Control: County Commission
File Name: REGULATING FENCES CHARGED WITH ELECTRICITY Introduced: 7/22/2011
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action:
Agenda Date: 9/20/2011 Agenda Item Number: 7A
Notes: SEE 112616 FOR FINAL VERSION AS ADOPTED. Title: ORDINANCE PERTAINING TO ZONING; REGULATING FENCES CHARGED WITH ELECTRICITY; AMENDING SECTION 33-11 OF THE CODE OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA; PROVIDING SEVERABILITY, INCLUSION IN THE CODE, AND AN EFFECTIVE DATE [SEE ORIGINAL ITEM UNDER FILE NO. 111266]
Indexes: ELECTRICAL
  ELECTRICAL FENCES
  ORDINANCE PERTAINING
  ZONING
Sponsors: Bruno A. Barreiro, Prime Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 9/20/2011 7A Amended
REPORT: (SEE RELATED AGENDA ITEM 7A AMENDED, LEGISLATIVE FILE NUMBER 112616, FOR AMENDED VERSION)

Board of County Commissioners 9/1/2011 15F1 Second Reading Rescheduled
REPORT: It was moved by Commissioner Diaz that Item 7A from the August 2, 2011, Board of County Commissioners meeting, be reconsidered. He noted the item was approved at that meeting. Commissioner Diaz said the purpose of reconsideration was to amend the item. He noted the item was sponsored by Commissioner Barreiro, but he (Commissioner Diaz) made the motion to approve this item at the August 2, 2011 meeting because Commissioner Barreiro was absent. He said the item addressed electrically charged fences located in the Industrial zone. The motion for reconsideration was seconded by Commissioner Barreiro, and upon being put to a vote, passed by a vote of 11-0 (Commissioners Monestime and Suarez were absent). County Attorney Robert Cuevas explained that the vote to reconsider the item brought the item back before the county commission. He said because the item was a second reading item, it needed to be re-advertised. The County Attorney said he needed to know on what date the Commission would like to hear the item. Commissioner Barreiro suggested that the second reading of this ordinance be held on September 20, 2011 and properly advertised for that date. Chairman Martinez stated that the county commission was reconsidering the item, and the item would be placed before the commission again so that all members could review the amendment to the item that was being proposed. He asked whether anyone objected to this statement, and asked whether the item would be advertised and placed on the September 20, 2011 county commission agenda. No one objected to Chairman Martinez’ statement or question.

Board of County Commissioners 8/2/2011 7A Reconsidered
REPORT: NOTE: First Assistant County Attorney Abigail Price-Williams read the foregoing proposed ordinance into the record. It was moved by Commissioner Diaz that this proposed ordinance be adopted. This motion was seconded by Commissioner Edmonson, and upon being put to a vote, passed by a vote of 11-0 (Commissioners Barreiro and Moss were absent). The foregoing proposed ordinance was adopted and assigned Ordinance No. 11-57. SPECIAL NOTE: On September 1, 2011, it was moved by Commissioner Diaz that the Board reconsider this ordinance for the purpose of amending it; rescheduling the date for second reading to 9/20/2011. This motion was seconded by Commissioner Barreiro and upon being put to a vote, passed 11-0 (Commissioners Monestime and Suarez were absent).

County Attorney 7/22/2011 Assigned Craig H. Coller

Infrastructure and Land Use Committee 7/13/2011 1E1 Amended Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation with committee amendment(s) P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Geri Bonzon-Keenan read the foregoing proposed ordinance into the record. Chairwoman Edmonson opened the public hearing on the foregoing ordinance. Mr. Juan Mayol, 701 Brickell Avenue, appeared before the Committee in support of the foregoing ordinance. He acknowledged Ms. Cindy Gassel (phonetic), Sentry Security System, noting that Sentry was the nations’ leading manufacturer and installer of electric fences, featuring the Electric Guard Dog. For the record, Mr. Mayol submitted a list of jurisdictions where electric fences were permitted as a safe deterrent against crime and theft, in response to the industrial and small business needs. Mr. Mayol also submitted photographs of the proposed electric fences as well as the existing barbed wire fences. He noted the proposed fences were tested and certified; they were powered by 12-volt batteries and charged by solar energy; and they received an electrical current pulse every 1.3 seconds rather than a constant current in order to provide power for signage which notified the public that the fences were electrically charged. Mr. Mayol said the proposed electric fences were limited to industrial areas; were only allowed as a secondary barrier behind another fence or wall; were subject to height limitations; were required to obtain building permits in compliance with all life safety codes; and were required to display proper signage. He advised the Committee that he worked with staff from the Planning and Zoning, Fire Rescue, Police, and Building and Neighborhood Compliance Departments. Mr. Mayol expressed appreciation to Commissioner Barreiro for sponsoring the foregoing ordinance and urged the Committee to forward this ordinance to the County Commission with a favorable recommendation. Hearing no one else wishing to speak before the Committee, Chairwoman Edmonson closed the public hearing. Commissioner Barreiro noted this proposed ordinance was another mechanism to protect businesses’ goods and assets. It was moved by Commissioner Barreiro that the foregoing ordinance be forwarded to the County Commission with a favorable recommendation. This motion was seconded by Commissioner Diaz. Commissioner Sosa suggested the ordinance be amended to require the warning signs be posted in English, Spanish and Creole. Commissioner Barreiro accepted this amendment. Commissioner Jordan questioned whether anyone had ever been seriously injured by the electric fences, noting she wanted to ensure there were no unintended consequences. Ms. Cindy Gassel (phonetic), 201 Wintermist Drive, Cary, North Carolina, representing Sentry Security, appeared before the Committee. She said there were no incidents of anyone being injured by the electric fences and the Company had never been successfully sued as a result of injury. Ms. Gassel noted studies conducted confirmed the safety of these fences. Commissioner Diaz offered an amendment that the proposed fences be pulsating systems, and Commissioner Barreiro accepted this amendment. Commissioner Monestime agreed with Commissioner Sosa that the warning signs should be posted in three languages. Assistant County Attorney Craig Coller read the following amendments: ~ Page 3, subsection 7, to insert the language “in three languages Spanish, English and Creole” after the language “Such warning signs shall be posted on the electrically charged fence, . . .” ~Page 3, subsection 8, to insert the word “pulsating” after the language “A Building permit shall be required prior to installing an electrically . . .” Upon being put to a vote, the motion made by Commissioner Barreiro and seconded by Commissioner Diaz, passed by a vote of 6-0. Following the vote on the foregoing ordinance, it was moved by Commissioner Barreiro that this ordinance be reconsidered. This motion was seconded by Commissioner Diaz, and upon being put to a vote, passed by a vote of 6-0. Commissioner Diaz proffered, and Commissioner Barreiro accepted, an amendment to exempt military facilities. Hearing no further comments or questions, the foregoing proposed ordinance was forwarded to the County Commission with a favorable recommendation with Committee amendments to insert the language “in three languages Spanish, English and Creole” on page 3, subsection 7, after “Such warning signs shall be posted on the electrically charged fence, . . .”; to insert the word “pulsating” in subsection 8 after the language “A Building permit shall be required prior to installing an electrically . . .”; and to exempt military facilities.

Legislative Text


TITLE
ORDINANCE PERTAINING TO ZONING; REGULATING FENCES CHARGED WITH ELECTRICITY; AMENDING SECTION 33-11 OF THE CODE OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA; PROVIDING SEVERABILITY, INCLUSION IN THE CODE, AND AN EFFECTIVE DATE

BODY
BE IT ORDAINED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMIDADE COUNTY, FLORIDA:
Section 1. Section 33-11(g) of the Code of Miami-Dade County, Florida, is hereby amended to read as follows:1
Sec. 33-11. Fences, Walls, Bus Shelters and Hedges.

* * *
(g) Wire fences, barbed wire and electricity charged fences. Wire fences shall be permitted in all districts except where otherwise prohibited by this chapter. Barbed wire fences and fences charged with electricity shall be permitted only in the AU Zoning District, except as may be approved after public hearing and except>>:<<

>>i)<< [[that]] Barbed wire fences shall be permitted in the BU and IU Zones where such barbed wire is placed on an angle extension of not more than sixteen (16) inches on top of walls or fences at least six (6) feet in height. This extension shall contain no more than three (3) strands of barbed wire and shall not extend over official rights-of-way or over property under different ownership.

>>(ii) Electrically charged secondary wire fences shall be permitted in IU Districts where such fences conform with the requirements of Section 33-11(k).<<
(h) Heights in RU and EU-M Districts. In the RU and EU-M Districts, the height of any fence, or wall shall not exceed six (6) feet. In the RU and EU-M Districts, the height of any hedge shall not exceed seven (7) feet. In the RU-5 and RU-5A Districts, fences, walls and hedges shall conform to these regulations, except as may otherwise specifically be required by the District regulations.

(i) Height in other EU, AU and GU Districts. In EU Districts other than EU-M, and in AU and GU Districts, the height of any fence, or wall shall not exceed six (6) feet when located within the required front or side street setback areas; In EU Districts other than EU-M, and in AU and GU Districts, the height of any hedge shall not exceed seven (7) feet when located within the required front or side street setback areas. At other points in such districts, fences, walls or hedges shall not exceed eight (8) feet in height. The Director may authorize hedges of a greater height for windbreaks for groves when necessary to protect same.

(j) Height in BU and IU Districts. In the BU and IU Districts, the height of any wire fence shall not exceed eight (8) feet when located within the required front or side street setback areas or when located between the building line and other property lines. Walls and hedges, when located within the required front or side street setback areas shall not exceed four (4) feet in height. When located between the building line and other property lines, walls and hedges shall not exceed eight (8) feet in height. >>It is provided, however, that electrically charged secondary wire fences in IU Districts shall not exceed ten (10) feet or two (2) feet above the height of primary perimeter fence, whichever is lower.<<

(k) IU Districts, fence in lieu of wall. In IU Districts, a wire fence >>or combination wire fence and electrically charged secondary wire fence<< shall be permitted in lieu of a masonry wall as required in the [[Industrial]] >>IU<< Districts under the following conditions:

(1) That the property concerned is zoned industrial and the adjacent property, either abutting on or across the street from where the fence is to be erected is zoned industrial.

(2) The storage within such fences be limited to vehicles, equipment and new materials.

(3) That all required parking be excluded from the fenced-in area, unless otherwise approved by the Director.

(4) Where abutting property is other than industrial, or where the property on the street opposite the industrial site concerned is zoned other than industrial, a concrete wall will be erected as otherwise provided for in this chapter.

>>(5) Electrically charged secondary wire fences shall be completely surrounded by a non-electrical fence or wall located between the electrically charged wire fence and the perimeter of the property; and

(6) The height of the electrically charged secondary wire fence shall not exceed ten (10) feet or two (2) feet above the height of a non-electrical perimeter fence, whichever is lower; and

(7) Electrically charged wire fences shall be clearly identified with warning signs that read: “Warning - Electric Fence”. Such warning signs<< >>in three languages, English, Spanish and Creole,<<2 >>shall be posted on the electrically charged fence at least five (5) feet above finished grade and spaced no greater than sixty (60) feet apart; and

(8) A Building permit shall be required prior to installing an electrically<< >>pulsating<< >>charged wire fence. Said fence must meet all applicable life-safety codes.<<

>>It is provided, however, that the limitations set forth in this section for electrically charged fences shall not apply to United States Military Bases.<<

Section 2. If any section, subsection, sentence, clause or provision of this ordinance is held invalid, the remainder of this ordinance shall not be affected by such invalidity.
Section 3. It is the intention of the Board of County Commissioners, and it is hereby ordained that the provisions of this ordinance, including any sunset provision, shall become and be made a part of the Code of Miami-Dade County, Florida. The sections of this ordinance may be renumbered or relettered to accomplish such intention, and the word “ordinance” may be changed to “section,” “article,” or other appropriate word.
Section 4. This ordinance shall become effective ten (10) days after the date of enactment unless vetoed by the Mayor, and if vetoed, shall become effective only upon an override by this Board.

1 Words stricken through and/or [[double bracketed]] shall be deleted. Words underscored and/or >>double arrowed<< constitute the amendment proposed. Remaining provisions are now in effect and remain unchanged.

2 Committee amendments are indicated as follows: words double stricken through and/or [[double bracketed]] shall be deleted, words double underlined and/or »double arrowed« constitute the amendment proposed.



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