Illegal Wood Lots

My office has received a number of complaints about the cutting and sale of firewood in residential neighborhoods. The wood splitters are loud, the stacks of wood are a fire hazard and there is a lot of customer and truck traffic associated with the wood lots. In addition, these are commercial operations which are not allowed in residential zones.

County Code Compliance staff can cite the operators. However, very often the offenders say that they are not conducting a commercial operation; and that the wood is for their own use. Proving otherwise is has been a problem in the past.

I have asked that the ordinance banning commercial wood lots in residential zones be strengthened, either by limiting the amount of wood cut and stored on the property or by limiting the use of a hydraulic wood splitter. The Planning Department is currently considering various approaches and will return to the Board of Supervisors with proposed changes.

I am interested in your feedback and ideas. Please let me know what you think.

Send Feedback to: bruce.mcpherson@co.santa-cruz.ca.us