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Salem Oregon Laws.

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hey all, I'm having a really tough time finding information on backyard hens in Salem Oregon.  We have 2 small bantams and are just trying to prepare ourselves 'just in case'.  We live in NE Salem so I guess we're technically still in the city limits.  I was told in the Oregon introduction thread that someone's friend had their hens evicted because a neighbour complained.

Anyone have any concrete evidence?  Help?

I'm still poking around for info as well but anything is a great help.

post #2 of 14

Digging through the Salem Revised Codes, it looks like it will depend on how your property is zoned:

RA - Residential Agriculture zoning states that the following is allowed:

145.020(3) Raising of livestock, and other animals and fowl by residents of the premises for their
own private, noncommercial use on a lot of 10,000 square feet or more;


RS - Single Family Residential zoning doesn't mention livestock or fowl.



Here are the only other references I could find that specifically mention animals:

95.235. Killing or Molesting Ducks Prohibited.
(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to kill, injure, take, or molest any duck or any
duck nest in, upon, or adjacent to any waters within the corporate limits of the city, except as
provided in subsection (b) of this section. This section shall not apply to any person otherwise
lawfully killing or taking ducks by the ducks legal owner, by the lawful agent of the ducks legal
owner, or by a government employee or contractor of the City of Salem engaged in flight safety
hazard abatement to comply with Chapter 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 139.337 at
McNary Field.
(b) Whenever the number or actions of ducks upon any premises, public or private,
constitute a nuisance in the judgment of the parks director, he shall have the authority to abate
the nuisance by the removal of any of such ducks as may reasonably appear to be wild or not
owned by any person. In addition or in lieu thereof, he may, in his discretion authorize any
person in possession of any premises affected by such nuisance to remove or cause the removal
of any such ducks. (Ord No. 5365; Ord No. 15-81; Ord No. 96-88; Ord 54-05)


119.070. KEEPING OF MINIATURE SWINE. Where permitted as a special
use, not more than one miniature swine of the species Sus scrofa bittatus (commonly known as a
"potbellied pig") per dwelling unit may be kept provided the following conditions are met and
maintained:
(a) The animal is less than 100 pounds in weight;
(b) The animal is less than 18 inches in height at the shoulder;
(c) The animal is spayed or neutered as evidenced by a veterinarian's certificate,
which certificate shall also certify the species of the animal, its age, shoulder height and weight
when spayed or neutered. (Ord No. 67-93)

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your help.

Looks like we're at the mercy of our neighbors not to rat us out, and luck.

(heavy sigh)

If this link works, we found a news story from 2006 regarding people wanting to change the chicken zoning laws in Salem.

http://www.katu.com/news/local/5010121.html


Edited by Zanadi - 8/29/08 at 10:12am
post #4 of 14

I have researched chicken laws in Salem Oregon and gotten copies of previous council meeting minutes and court rulings on this issue.  I fully intend to change the ordinance to allow the keeping of a few backyard hens in the city and have already spoken to my city councilman about it.  The way the ordinance is written is ambiguous . . . only listed uses are allowed.  Chickens aren't listed but neither are dogs, cats, rabbits, etc.  However, it specifically states that pot-bellied pigs are OK in the city!  I have drafted a proposed ordinance change for council to consider. I'm looking for others who would support this and be willing to write letters or show up at a city council meeting with me. Our socio-economic times have changed considerably since the last time this issue came up in Salem and I believe we have a strong case. Raising chickens has never been more practical.

post #5 of 14

It's ridiculous that chickens aren't allowed in Salem.  We have tons of people down here with backyard chickens, even in my fairly primped historic neighborhood.  When I called to check about the ordinances, the woman in city hall told me chickens are a great idea and even offered to send me a  copy of the codes to show anyone that questioned the legality.  Perhaps you could contact people in Corvallis coding/etc. to vouch for the fact that it hasn't reduced property values or created nuisance complaints?  I'm sure Salem laws can be changed.

1  DH, 2 teen DS, 1 lab/chessie mix, 1 stubborn beagle, 2 cats, 8 standards, 2 cochin, I lost count of how many silkies (evil creatures just keep hatching out more) and 6 ducks.
Warning, I'm a Fixer:  If you ask for advice you are liable to get it, bluntly.  But, it's always kindly meant or I keep my mouth firmly shut.
Reply
1  DH, 2 teen DS, 1 lab/chessie mix, 1 stubborn beagle, 2 cats, 8 standards, 2 cochin, I lost count of how many silkies (evil creatures just keep hatching out more) and 6 ducks.
Warning, I'm a Fixer:  If you ask for advice you are liable to get it, bluntly.  But, it's always kindly meant or I keep my mouth firmly shut.
Reply
post #6 of 14

I am interested in helping change the chicken law in Salem, Oregon... any new developments?

post #7 of 14

SalemUnderground, let me know how I can assist in getting the ordinance changed in Salem.  I'm new on this forum and have been researching keeping chickens and was very disapointed when I learned that I could not have any.  Would really like to help!

post #8 of 14

New for Feb 2009--go to the City Council Meeting.  See the following poster for information as to what is being presented. 

http://lovesalem.blogspot.com/2009/02/be-part-of-coolest-thing-going-in-salem.html

Remember: today, if you look carefully, you will see something wondrous, mysterious, and beautiful.  Pause.  Smile about it.  Savor it.  Let it be your inspiration.
Reply
Remember: today, if you look carefully, you will see something wondrous, mysterious, and beautiful.  Pause.  Smile about it.  Savor it.  Let it be your inspiration.
Reply
post #9 of 14

My brother went to the Salem city council meeting last night. They voted not bring the chicken subject to a vote. It was 3 for and 5 against, with one council member absent. The mayor, who was originally for chickens, changed her mind because she'd heard that the flu starts in birds and she couldn't stand to think about all those kids getting getting sick from their chickens!

Here's the article, posted immediately after the meeting:
http://www.statesmanjournal.com/article/20091026/UPDATE/91026030

"I prefer silent vice to ostentatious virtue." Albert Einstein
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"I prefer silent vice to ostentatious virtue." Albert Einstein
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post #10 of 14

Please tell your brother thank you for coming to the meeting last night.  It was a terrible blow, but not a surprise.  I am continuing to help people in NC, NJ, KS, MN, and OR with their chicken battles and some have already succeeded.  The chicken revolution will continue here in Salem.  The election in May will provide new hope as the mayor is stepping down and one of the two candidates, Anna Peterson, supports the chicken ordinance, I am told.  Also, four of the councilor seats are up for re-election next year as well and two that oppose chickens (Rogers and Clem) are not running for office again. This leaves room for new bodies in our local government who are hopefully, more intelligent and informed, than the previous fools who have been running the show. 

If you or anyone you know is interested in receiving updates, please contact me at salemchickens@yahoo.com and I will add you to my mailing list.

In the meantime, we are launching a new website that will be called www.Chicken-Revolution.com and selling Tshirts, stickers, and our documentary on DVD from that site. 

Thank you!

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