NICASIO (KPIX 5) — The ban on slaughtering animals in Marin County may soon be lifted, but not everyone is happy about it.

The aim is to support local farms and ranches.

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“We got some more piggies and rabbits in here,” Nicasio rancher Mark Pasternak said.

“We name them. All the moms have names,” Pasternak said.

But, the 2,000 bunnies aren’t pets.  He raises them before hauling them out to Turlock, where they are slaughtered to be sold to restaurants across California.

In Marin County, his small farm and others like it are banned from slaughtering animals. But, now the planning commission is discussing lifting the ban to allow small scale slaughter.

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At a hearing Monday resident opposed to the idea called it animal cruelty.

“We are at a point in history where we can choose not to eat animals,” Nicasio resident Miyoko Schinner said.

Pasternak says allowing small scale slaughter would help small farms.

“If we are going to support them and not just have commercial huge slaughterhouses. You have to do things that are going to support small farmer and make them survive,” Pasternak said.

The planning commission did not make a decision Monday, and plans to continue hearing public comments on the issue.

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