Good news: Our community permits chickens. Bad news: They lump them in with "livestock" and require an inspection, a $40 a year permit, and a 30 foot setback from all property lines. There is some question as to whether a movable pen would be permitted, as it would be impossible to determine whether setback was always being followed. Construction of a fixed pen, of course, would require a building permit and a bunch more red tape. Now it seems to me that if you don't keep roosters, a small number of chickens would be less intrusive than a dog. Chickens don't bark or bite, and since penned, won't be doing their business on the neighbor's lawn. The fee for a dog license is $3 a year. And, while you aren't permitted to let dogs roam free, there is no requirement that you construct an enclosure to make that impossible, and submit to an inspection. All this sounds discriminatory to me, and I'm prepared to make that point to the city council. I'd like to suggest a "Personal Use Poultry Permit" which would allow for up to six chickens, no roosters, no commercial sale of eggs, a lower fee ($10?), no inspection requirement, and reduced or eliminated setback requirements. Is there any precedent for this? Something else which would be helpful is a well organized document or presentation on the benefits of backyard chickens. Although it's an urban area, our community has a farmer's market and a real awareness of the advantage of locally grown produce. Convincing them that locally grown eggs are equally beneficial would help our cause. So ... any input from more experienced folk here will be greatly appreciated.