New ordinance (hopefully soon to pass!)

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by MTchick, Jul 19, 2007.

  1. MTchick

    MTchick Songster

    Feb 2, 2007
    Western Montana
    Our new ordinance has now been approved by everyone (the chicken committee, animal control, committee on public health, the local agriculture groups) except for the city council itself. This means that if it passes (which we believe it will), then this is the wording that will be in the official city ordinance. It has taken months of meetings to come to this, so I wanted to show everyone what the final result is in case it proves helpful for other towns. As I've mentioned in the past, much of this ordinance is a direct reinterpretation of our dog ordinance.

    The ordinance lives in a "No Livestock" chapter, so that is why it starts out saying "the prohibition... in this section..."

    F. The prohibition to keeping chickens in this section does not apply to the keeping of up to 6 female chickens while the animals are kept in such a manner that the following standards are complied with:

    1. The chickens must be kept on a single-family parcel(s), and chickens may be kept on a parcel(s) under one ownership with more than one dwelling if all residents and the owner consent in writing to allowing the chickens on the property. When chickens are kept on a multi-dwelling parcel(s) the owner of the chickens shall keep a copy of the signed approval document for inspection upon request by animal control personnel.

    2. The chickens shall be provided with a covered, predator-proof chicken house that is thoroughly ventilated, of sufficient size to admit free movement of the chickens, designed to be easily accessed, cleaned and maintained by the owners and be at least 2 square feet per chicken in size.

    3. No chicken house shall be located closer than 20 feet to any residential structure occupied by someone other than the chicken owner, custodian, or keeper.

    4. The chickens shall be shut into the chicken house at night, from sunset to sunrise.

    5. During daylight hours the adult chickens shall have access to the chicken house and, weather permitting, shall have access to an outdoor enclosure on the subject property, adequately fenced to contain the chickens and to prevent access to the chickens by dogs and other predators.

    6. Stored feed must be kept in a rodent- and predator-proof container

    7. It is unlawful for the owner, custodian, or keeper of any chicken to allow the animal(s) to be a nuisance to any neighbors, including but not limited to: noxious odors from the animals or their enclosure; and noise of a loud and persistent and habitual nature. Animal Control will determine whether or not a nuisance exists on a case-by-case basis.

    8. Enforcement Upon receiving a complaint of a possible violation Animal Control will investigate, determine if a violation exists and when appropriate leave a notice of violation and order to take corrective action with the owner, custodian, or keeper and provide them with written notice of the violations that require correction. Animal Control will revisit the owner’s address 10 days or more after the notice of violation is issued. If the owner, custodian, or keeper has failed to comply with the ordinance, Animal Control may issue a citation to the owner, custodian or keeper for failure to comply with any applicable requirement of this section.

    6.012.030 Notice of Violation and Order To Take Corrective Action. When Animal Control determines that a violation of the code has occurred, Animal Control may issue written notice to the owner, custodian or keeper, either personally or by certified mail. Such notice shall specify the provision or provisions of this chapter alleged to have been violated along with a short and plain statement of the facts that constitute the violation. The notice shall include an “order to take corrective action” requiring compliance within a reasonable time as stated in the order.

    6.012.030 Penalty--Fines. The city of Xxxxx Municipal Court judge shall assess animal violation fines as set forth in this chapter. An owner, custodian, or keeper of an animal who is found guilty of any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and fined an amount not less than twenty-five dollars or more than five hundred dollars. Failure to comply with a properly issued Notice of Violation and Order to Take Corrective Action shall be counted as a separate offense from a citation issued after the compliance date described in the order. Each day an offense exists shall constitute a separate offense pursuant to this chapter.

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