Better get approval from your local government agency first. Yep, big government is everywhere, even in your backyard. In Southworth, Washington, Kitsap County issued a work stoppage order to the Freeland family after a neighbor complained about their children’s treehouse.
The boys’ father built the treehouse. He is a landscape architect and built it without putting a nail in the tree; it’s built around the branches.
The county said the treehouse is illegal, and must come down. The Freelands say the county has also complained the treehouse is dangerous. “I feel the safety of my children is up to me on my property,” the boys’ mother said. “We feel on our own property in the United States of America, we can do what we want as long as we’re not hurting anybody and we’re not hurting the beautiful Puget Sound,” said Gabrielle Freeland, the boys’ mother. The Freelands say they will adhere to the work stoppage, but they have no intention of tearing down what they built for their boys.
Jeff Rowe, Kitsap County Chief Building Inspector said on Tuesday morning that he’s concerned because the family used recycled materials including repurposed timber to build the treehouse. Rowe says the family will need to hire a licensed person to prove the materials used are safe and also determine whether the treehouse is structurally sound. He added that he’s acting out of an abundance of cautious because he believes the treehouse is dangerous to children. “It’s not what I would call your typical Normal Rockwell Treehouse.”
The Freelands says they plan to add a safety net under the treehouse to make it even more safe.
Kitsap County wants to come onto your property and review anything perceived as “dangerous to children”? What’s next – a permit for trampolines? A permit for a slip ‘n slide? Just another example of big government encroaching on our personal property rights.
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