According to Utah Administrative Code R68-1, “Every owner or person coming into possession of one or more colonies of bees within the State of Utah shall register with the Department of Agriculture and Food…”
The code provides further regulation, including the requirement that each “apiary location” (a place where bees are kept) be identified by a sign showing the owner’s registration number. Other regulations require the beekeeper’s assistance to “the department” or county bee inspectors in locating the apiaries, and detail how salvage operations are to be performed for diseased colonies.
The application for a beekeeper’s registration apparently also constitutes an application for a beekeeper’s license. This seems a little confusing since the code does not state that a beekeeper must be licensed by the state in the first place.
In addition to state regulations, the counties are involved and employ bee inspectors, and cities enforce their own ordinances related to bee keeping. They regulate where bees may be kept, how many hives may exist on certain types of property, etc.
Government at every level is violating private property rights. Government should exist to protect our right to life, liberty and property, but as is the case with much of what government actually does, these regulations are unwarranted and not based on the fundamental principles of freedom, liberty, and private property rights.
The federal government encroaches on our rights at unprecedented levels. Over the past two centuries Americans have witnessed a steady march away from individual liberty and personal responsibility, and toward an ever-growing government that is now involved in their lives in every way imaginable (and then some). As bad as this is, we can’t expect to rein in the federal government if we can’t do the same at the local and state levels.
Utahns do not need a nanny state to regulate and control what they do on their private property. Utahns do not need more taxes, more politicians and more bureaucrats at every level, protecting them from themselves.
We urge Utahns to petition their governments at the local and state level to adopt policies that favor liberty, and to leave bee keepers alone.