Herriman, Utah Backyard Chicken Ordinance NEEDS YOUR HELP


8 Years
Sep 7, 2011
There is a city ordinance up for discussion on September 15th at city hall. We NEED support. Please attend the meeting if you can.

Herriman City Hall
13011 South Pioneer Street (6000 West)
Herriman, UT 84096

7:00pm, September 15th.

Here is a draft of the ordinance and below are my current concerns.....

“Chickens” to be added as a permitted use in the R-1-10, R-1-15, R-2-10, R-2-15, and FR-1 zones.

Where permitted by the zoning ordinance, persons may keep backyard chickens on single-family owner occupied residential lots in accordance with the provisions of this section:
1. Application; Obtaining Permit: It is unlawful for any person to keep more than two backyard chickens without first making application for and obtaining a backyard chicken permit. In all zones and lot sizes where chickens are a permitted use, two chickens may be kept without a permit.
2. At Large: It is unlawful for any person who is the owner, keeper, or temporary custodian of any backyard chicken to allow the animal(s) to be at large, off the premises or outside the approved enclosure.
3. Unsanitary Conditions: It is unlawful for any person to keep and maintain in an unclean or unsanitary condition any coop, enclosure or other structure or area in which any backyard chicken is kept. All droppings must be cleaned at least once a week.
4. Nuisance: It is unlawful for the owner or keeper of any backyard chicken to allow the animal(s) to be a nuisance to any neighbor, including, but not limited to, creating noxious odors from the animals, their waste, coop, or related structure or generating noise of a loud and persistent nature.
5. Subject To Inspection: All places where any backyard chickens are kept shall be subject to inspection prior to a permit being issued for cleanliness, health, and sanitation purposes by a code enforcement official, animal control officer, or representative of the Salt Lake Valley health department. A code enforcement official, animal control officer, or representative of the Salt Lake Valley health department shall also be authorized to inspect any property where backyard chickens are kept based on any complaint or observation that the requirements of this section or conditional use permit requirement are in violation.
6. Female Chickens Only: Only female chickens may be kept. No ducks, geese, turkeys, peafowl, crowing hens, or roosters may be kept. No other bird species shall be kept except as provided by this code and birds normally and generally considered household or indoor pets.
7. Accessory Buildings: Chicken coops shall be considered accessory buildings and are subject to the area provisions of the Herriman zoning ordinance. Height and setback provisions shall be determined by this section but shall in no cases violate setback or height limitations of the zoning ordinance with the exception of proximity to a main structure.
8. Feed And Water Access: Chickens shall have access to feed and water at all times in an area that is protected from wild birds, rodents, and other predators. Any stored feed must be kept in a rodent and predator proof container.
9. Personal Use Only: Backyard chickens shall be for personal use only. The selling of eggs or fertilizer or the breeding of chickens for commercial use is prohibited.
10. Slaughtering: The slaughtering of backyard chickens on the premises is allowed in areas not visible to the public and must be accomplished in a humane and sanitary fashion. All entrails and by-products of the slaughtering process shall be discarded in accordance with Health Department Regulations.
11. Dead Birds; Rotting Eggs: Dead birds and rotting eggs shall be removed within twenty four (24) hours and properly disposed of.
12. Review Of Permits: All backyard chicken permits are subject to review upon substantiated and unresolved complaint.
13. Enclosure Standards:
a. Chickens must be contained within an enclosure or fenced area at all times.
b. Backyard chicken enclosures shall be contained entirely in the rear yard. No enclosures will be permitted in any front or side yard.
c. All enclosures shall have a maximum opening of two and one-half inches (21/2").
14. Coop Standards:
a. Any backyard chicken shall be provided a covered, predator proof and well ventilated coop that must be impermeable to rodents, wild birds, and predators including dogs and cats. The coop shall provide a minimum of two (2) square feet per animal and be of sufficient size to admit free movement.
b. Backyard chicken coops shall be located within or adjacent to the enclosure and be contained entirely in the rear yard. No coops will be permitted in any front or side yard.
c. All chicken coops shall be placed at least forty feet (40') from any dwelling on an adjacent lot.
d. Chicken coops shall be maintained in good condition.
e. Chicken coops shall be constructed such that:
(1) It is freestanding.
(2) Is easily accessible for cleaning and maintenance.
(3) Is enclosed on all sides and has a roof and door(s).
(4) Doors must be able to be shut and locked.
(5) No chicken coop shall exceed eight feet (8') in height.
(6) The coop shall be covered with predator and bird proof wire with a maximum opening of one-fourth inch (1/4"). The wire shall be buried at least three inches (3") and bent outward at least another twenty four inches (24") to prevent rodents from burrowing into the structure unless the coop is elevated off the ground at least twelve inches (12").
(7) All openings and vents shall be covered with predator and bird proof wire with a maximum opening of one-fourth inch (1/4").
f. Coops may be relocated from time to time within the back yard provided that it remains within or adjacent to the enclosure and adheres to all setback standards.
15. Backyard Chicken Permit Application Requirements:
a. Prior to the issuance of any backyard chicken permit, the applicant shall submit the following information:
(1) A completed and signed application.
(2) Appropriate fee, as outlined in the master fee schedule.
(3) A site plan showing the exact location of the enclosure and coop, including measured distances from all dwellings and property lines, including buildings on adjacent properties.
(4) A photograph or illustration of the proposed enclosure and coop, including construction materials, height, and other dimensions.
(5) Signed consent to an onsite inspection of all enclosures, coops and surroundings.
16. Side And Rear Setbacks:
a. Minimum rear yard: Three feet (3') minimum from any coop to any rear property line.
b. Side yard setback: Three feet (3') minimum from any coop to any side property line.
17. Maximum Number Of Chickens:
Lot Size
(Square Feet) Maximum Number
Of Chickens
Less than 5,000 0
5,000 to 5,999 2
6,000 to 6,999 3
7,000 to 7,999 4
8,000 to 8,999 5
9,000 to 9,999 6
10,000 to 11,999 8
12,000 or more 10

My current concerns:

1. Setback from adjacent structures being 40ft will, essentially, eliminate anything under about an 8,000 sq ft lot because it would literally be impossible to have that setback on lots under this size. I think this should be lessened to something more reasonable to include the smaller lots (Unless you and your rear neighbor have a minimum of 25ft deep backyards - this would not be feasible).

2. If lot dimension allows, a side yard is sometimes optimum for placement of a coop for a few reasons: it keeps the rear yard available for more family and children friendly activities and it may create more shade for the coop keeping the heat down in the summer. A potential fix for this is maybe a variance if you have your neighbor approve of the smaller setback from their structure - if they like the idea then the 3ft setback from property line should be fine. This "variance" could be revoked at any time by the grantor.

3. Number of chickens per lot size: Chickens are "flock animals" and do much better in a flock - they struggle in small numbers. The reality is that a dozen birds don't create any more work and create a more comfortable environment for the chickens which should make them more quiet than a couple of birds that feel "exposed" because of a lack of flock. Here in Utah we have larger family number than any other place in the country. For instance, assuming that one day we could get our HOA chicken friendly, on our lot (which is just under 7,000sq ft) we could have 3 chickens. The daily egg production would be under 3 eggs during the summer and under 2 during the winter. It seems that this ordinance is MUCH more restrictive than other cities in our area that do not even have a farming history - shoot, if I lived downtown SLC I wouldn't have any limit to the number or birds

Please consider this food for thought. I would hate to see an ordinance pass that "appeared" to coincide with the direction of the city and it's constituents but had language that made it unattainable for the majority.

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