Cal-Poultry, a popular poultry slaughterhouse among the Asian community, will have to shut its doors. Interesting how three council members flipped their December vote from yes, keep the slaughterhouse open, to no, shut it down. Reporter Rebecca Kimitch said that a number of residents spoke at the meeting on Tuesday complaining about the slaughterhouse.
A number of residents also reminded the council members of the March election. Here’s Rebecca Kimitch’s story:
Council slams door on slaughterhouse
Posted: 01/13/2009 10:45:21 PM PST
ROSEMEAD – Passionate pleas from residents Tuesday night convinced three council members to reverse their earlier support for the expansion of a well-known poultry slaughterhouse.
Instead of allowing Chinese American Live Poultry, 8932 Garvey Ave., to expand, the city will take steps to close the business down, even if it involves court action, Mayor John Tran said.
“The will of the people is saying we don’t want (the slaughterhouse), so we will challenge it. We will take it to court,” Tran said. “This is a risk, it’s a liability, but if that is a liability we want to bear, that is what we want to do.”
The city council had last month approved, by a vote of 3-2, a change to the municipal code that would have allowed CAL Poultry to expand, and allowed more slaughterhouses in the city.
A second reading and approval of the change were necessary to make it official. Such second readings are often considered formalities, however on Tuesday, three council members did 180-degree turns of their support.
Resident after resident told the council how they have been bothered and disgusted by smells emanating from the slaughterhouse. And they cited the business’ long history of violating health and zoning codes.
CAL Poultry has been selling freshly slaughtered chickens and duck since 1991. A decade after it opened, animal slaughtering and storage was banned in the area. However, CAL Poultry was allowed to stay under the condition that it not expand.
Two years ago, complaints from neighbors began to pour in to the city about odors and chickens running loose in the street. The city tried to get the place to move, but ran into legal challenges since it is legally allowed to be there. Though city and county officials have periodically found the business to be in violation of laws, every time the owners have fixed the violation, city staff said.
The business’ owners said they could fix the odors by being allowed to add a filtration system to the roof, and asked for the municipal code change to allow that expansion.
Until Tuesday, Tran and council members Peggy Low and John Nunez thought the change was the best way to deal with the odors, over the objections of council members Margaret Clark and Gary Taylor.