City Council member says "Don't waste your time"


In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 2, 2012
Columbus, MN
Hey folks,
I am trying to get the ball rolling to hopefully have the city ordinance amended to allow backyard chickens in urban residential areas in my city. I have contacted all of the city council as well as the Mayor. I did receive responses from 2 of the council members. Both said they would not be interested in changing the ordinance at this time. One of them left me a message, rather unfriendly if you ask me, letting me know that didn't want me to "waste my time" pursuing this as she was not on board and that I was only looking at the positives and not considering the many negative sides to allowing backyard chickens. In my brief letter, I did point out a few requested that I be given a chance to share the many things I had learned during my research of the issue. It appears that I will not even be given a chance to discuss it.

I am undeterred at this point. I have received lots of interest and support from residents of the community in the short time that I have been working on this, but it is clear that we will need a lot more support to change any minds. I have put up flyers around town, started a facebook page and a petition. I have been receiving more inquiries from curious individuals and those who might be interested in helping. Right now, I'm looking for more suggestions on how to handle what seems to be a rather inflexible city council and also how to gain support/get the word out in the community. I feel like I am walking a fine line because I want to be respecful of the city officials and not strain the relationship anymore, and at the same time make it known in the community that there is opposition and support is needed. I have received lots of great suggestions already from the Andover thread. Does anyone have experience in dealing with a totally unsupportive city council? Is there any hope in changing their minds? Help please
I would encourage you to check out what other cities have done. The one I'm most familiar with is C.I.T.Y. - which stands for Chickens In They Yard. This organization was formed to get chickens allowed in Salem, OR. You can see what they did by going to their website: They provide lots of info. It took them I think 2 years to finally succeed but it shows what hard work and perseverance can accomplish. When they started there were just 3 supporters, now they have 800!

Good Luck!

Google "backyard chickens, Salem Oregon," there is lots of information and also a video blog documenting the two year fight to allow back yard chickens. It took two years for our city counsel to allow three chickens but just a few months later they have already upped the number to five. I think you will find it very helpful.

Good luck.

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