Pending City Council Decision on Chickens

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances' started by EllenW, Jun 19, 2009.

  1. EllenW

    EllenW Hatching

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    Hello,

    We are hoping to raise a few chickens for 4H and when I asked the City of Chanhassen (MN) as to rules, I learned that the City Council will vote this coming Monday evening on an ordinance, proposed by the Planning Commission, that would disallow keeping of farm animals, including chickens, from non-agricultural properties. We are very disappointed and don't really understand why this is occurring.

    I'd love to get input from you as to how we might be able to turn this situation around. I plan to attend the City Council meeting on Monday and plead my case, but I'm not sure how to make it!

    Thanks for your help.

    Ellen
     
  2. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Find out if there have been problems with people keeping "farm animals." And then ask the question as to why the problems are not addressed more broadly rather than narrowly disallowing a use that is becoming more common nationwide.

    If it is noise, then the general noise ordinance needs to be addressed. If doesn't make any difference if the noise is from a barking dog, power equipment, garage band, wild party,pig squealing or rooster crowing. The problem is not the cause, it is the volume and recurrance. Ditto for odors, pests (flies, etc.) or other problems.
     
  3. EllenW

    EllenW Hatching

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    Jun 19, 2009
    Thank you, Sonoran Silkies! These are good ideas.
     
  4. BigPeep

    BigPeep Songster

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    The key is numbers. When the Chicago City Council tried to do this a few years ago, the Hispanic community descended on the meeting and stopped it. You need to find other people who are raisin or want to raise chickens. Maybe there is some underground chicken activity going on which is the reason for the move by the city. Get the Norwegians to storm City Hall:)

    Seriously, I would also collect all of the ordinances you can from other places. There is a website called www.madcitychickens.com
    from Madison where they have an active group. They are doing "coop tours" this August. They might be your best source.

    There is also a video "Mad City Chickens" , about what they went through to get their ordinance changed, which is quite humorous. You might want to get a copy and play a portion of it for the council.

    By the way, I am an attorney and former planning commissioner and current park commissioner and recent chicken owner. Let me know if I can be of any further help.
     
  5. 1Ameraucanas

    1Ameraucanas Hatching

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    I am looking forward to seeing Ellen at the City Council meeting in Chanhassen, Minnesota on Monday evening. When the topic came up at the Planning Commission, the other topics up for discussion were: Beekeeping (which is also not allowed, since it might be a danger to children); Keeping birds of wild prey (falcons, hawks, eagles); And keeping of wild animals, such as cougars, tigers, etc.). There were assumptions made, such as that the pet chickens would "roam" freely into other people's yards or the public areas, and that if chickens were allowed, so must turkeys, geese, etc. Also noted, it was stated that it would be additional work on the part of the city to manage applications for permits and such. (I think this is what we pay taxes for?!?)
    It is a great motivator to know that other cities have made the right decision to allow for keeping of chickens as pets, while controlling through permits and allowance in how many are "OK" to keep.
     
  6. BigPeep

    BigPeep Songster

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    Actually, Madison requires each owner to pay ten dollars per year for a permit so that helps to defray any additional enforcement costs.
     
  7. 1Ameraucanas

    1Ameraucanas Hatching

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    Quote:Understandable and something that a passionate keeper of chickens would be more than willing to pay. Not unlike the fee for a dog license or kennel permit or in our case a stable permit for someone who lives within 3 blocks of us and keeps 2 horses on less than 10 acres of land which constitutes farm property. By our best guess it is less than 2.5 acres. We live on about .75 acres and we are zoned rural/residential.

    We just would like to know why chickens are so misunderstood?
     
  8. BigPeep

    BigPeep Songster

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    Chickens represent the lower classes. Horses represent the upper classes. It's a snobbery thing.
     

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