Gwinnett County

Family fights to keep farm after county tells them it doesn’t meet zoning ordinance

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — A Gwinnett County family is fighting to keep their farm as county officials say their property is on land that could be used for future homes.

Channel 2′s Gwinnett County Bureau Chief Matt Johnson was at the Twin Oaks Farm outside of Loganville, where the family said they are hoping to clear up a misunderstanding.

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The Roman family said they bought the land from farmers eight years ago and didn’t expect to have any zoning issues. But now, the chickens, turkeys and other livestock that the family relies on could all have to go away.

Katrina Roman and her son take time out every day to feed the chickens on the family farm. The chickens, turkeys and their eggs end up feeding them.

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“We farm our own protein source, basically,” Roman said.

Roman and her husband bought the 5.5-acre property in southwest Gwinnett County in 2015 so they would never have to worry about a food shortage.

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“I’m going to make sure I’m always able to support my family,” Roman said.

The family opens up the farm for tours and for selling eggs.

On April 2, a complaint led to code violations for the Romans having roosters and running a business.

“If we don’t have roosters, we’re not able to keep our flocks going, so our food source will run out,” Roman said.

Gwinnett County Code Enforcement said the land on Beaver Road outside of Loganville is zoned residential.

Roman said she bought it from farmers in 2015.

“We were under the assumption that we were free to farm it and continue the tradition that has always been on this property,” she said.

She asked the county about getting it re-zoned but found an uphill battle.

“Gwinnett is having to make up for a deficit in houses,” she said.

In a statement, a county spokesperson said that “in the future development map of the 2045 unified plan, this property is designated as suburban residential, where (agricultural residences) is not a recommended zoning district.”

Roman said she’s working to put together the $1,000 it takes to file paperwork to continue the fight.

“My community wants me here. They don’t want to see another development built on this land,” Roman said.

The family has started a petition online before their deadline next month to file paperwork.

You can sign the petition HERE.

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