I have had chickens within the city limits of Rome, GA for 3 years. After only positive comments from the few neighbors who knew about them, one neighbor reported me to the codes enforcement office. At present, city ordinance prohibits livestock in the city limits and this includes poultry. Because of being reported I have had to file an application for a Special Use Permit with the planning and zoning board. MY family has a hearing on Thursday afternoon of this week with planning and zoning, during which I have 10 minutes to present my case. My case is simply that my "special use" for the chickens is educational. With 3 young children, there are endless educational opportunities to be had, and I figure that is my best argument. I will also have a chance to provide a rebuttal for complaints anyone may have. We have a chicken tractor and never let the chickens out except when we are outside...and then we keep a close eye on them. The backyard isn't fenced but the neighbor's backyard is; nonetheless, the neighbor is concerned because sometimes the chickens do cross the property line into the small strip of her yard that isn't fenced. We have become more vigilant about chasing them back since the complaint was lodged; we had let our guard down because of the positive comments we had received from her in the past. The lot is 100'x150', by the way. We have 5 hens, no roos. We don't have odor problems nor vermin in the feed. These chickens are less noticeable than a medium sized dog would be. I'm developing a powerpoint in which I will show some of the educational uses of the chickens, and also I will list some of the cities in our fair state of Georgia (USA) where suburban chicken ordinances have been put in place. Any other advice is greatly appreciated here from those of you who've had to deal with this. Please note - this is a special use permit, specifically for my family and my property - it may spur a city-wide ordinance, but that's not what we're asking for at this time because that's not provided for now that we have been reported. The City Commission brought this forward some months ago and voted down a suburban chicken ordinance because only 2 folks showed up and spoke in opposition...it was basically looked at as a joke. I found out about the hearing just 2-3 hours before it happened and my schedule didn't allow me to attend. So we aren't specifically pleading for something city-wide. Also, if the BYC community members feel moved to send in letters of support, that would be appreciated as well. I don't want to overstep the boundaries of this website's TOS or anything...I haven't frequented the forums, rather I have just read on topics specifically relating to me over the last 3 years. Letters of support may be sent to cllewis.1 at gmail dot com - that's me. If you want to email the zoning board directly, please email phelton at romega dot us. Please copy me on anything you send. Thank you.