Zone Change amendment in Somers,CT NOW!


In the Brooder
7 Years
Jul 14, 2012
My zone change amendment change is now at the town hall and has "passed" from the zoning commision to the planning commision and now back to the zoning commision for the public hearing this Monday November 5th @ 7pm.

I learned, at this meeting that my mean neighbor has written a letter stating her opjection to the proposal (she herself has a rooster and a hen) Although I haven't heard it crowing lately??

I will get a copy of the letter tomorrow and will find out what her points are. One was "loose" chickens. (mine) 4 hens that wonder around my yard eating the ticks. My dear son contracted lyme disease twice! before I got them.

Anyway she said that she was concerned with Avian flu! Which there are no known cases in America. If anyone has any suggestions or any good articles on keeping chickens. That would be great!
Current law says that coops have to be 200 feet from property line. They consider chickens farm animals. My proposal is 25 feet setback. And some reasonable restrictions.
Thank you so much!
Try contacting your state's Division of Agriculture. In RI, they are a part of the Department of Environmental Management. Not sure if it is the same in CT. You should also have a State Veterinarian that works with the Ag Division. They should be able to help or at least point you in the right direction, especially regarding Avian Flu.
well the meeting is tonight and already I am finding a neighbor who is speaking out against my proposal.
She says that chickens carry salmonella.
I'd tell the old biddy that I don't allow my chickens to carry anything, as extra work inhibits their egg-laying. I'd further tell her that if she didn't straighten her act up, I was going to request the council to re-zone my neighborhood IDIOT-FREE and she'd be having to move.
I lost the zone amendment change. My neighbor got all of her friends to show up and I only had one person speak in my favor. It was horrible.
All I was trying to do was make it legal for the residents to keep backyard chickens with reasonable restrictions.
All the reasons they gave were invalid. But since I spoke first, I wasn't able to defend myself against the accusations.
I just wish more residents came forward to speak for it. I guess they just don't care since it doesn't effect them. They don't have mean neighbors making trouble for them.
I'd tell the old grouch that if I couldn't have chickens, I'd get emus. See how she likes looking over her fence at a bird that can look her in the eye. Tell her if she's concerned about Avian flu to stay current on her flu shots.

Seriously, what are they going to do to you if you keep your chickens?
I know, really?
I would post a reply but apparently she visits this website and will probably read it.
She quoted the information from this site in her arguments.
She hasn't heard the last of me.
Sorry to hear that. Do you have a list of what they mentioned that was incorrect? As I mentioned above, the state department of Ag should be able to help you out with facts on bird diseases. If you have a hard time getting a hold of someone let me know and I'll see if the RI guys know anyone in CT that could help.

Keep the faith!
Yes, they kept minutes of the meeting.
It just seemed like the town did not want to deal with the hassle of enforcing this. But I have a not from a zoning inforcement officer in another town who said in 6 years they didn't get any complaints (except maybe about a rooster)

They said a bunch of things and I was crushed because they didn't allow me to respond to it. very frustrating. Not democratic one bit.

One woman stood up and said that she was afraid of the increase in coyotes, foxes and fisher cats (thinking that chickens attract predators) she said "I have 2 small dogs that can't protect themselves"

Another man talked about how it will polute wells???

Another person talked about noise, smell, detracting from the neighborhood. etc.

The biggest complaint was that my chickens wondered onto their property maybe once or twice. They made it sound like a felony. Claiming damage to their flower beds, etc.
Salmonella, Avian flu.

The board made it sound like I finally complied by taking out the amendment application after I got the cease and desist order. Not true! I have been working on this for several months. They felt like I didn't do anything and that It took my neighbor's complaints to finally act and move my coop to the backyard.
I told them that my 4 hens were secured in their cage.. the board member said that "He didn'tknow if they were loose or contained" as of the meeting time ???
So it was basically my neighbor and all her friends ganging up on me. Each person that spoke was connected to her. A friend. A neighbor. I could certainly use some help here. It just seemed like the pp who had chickens never appeared. maybe they thought they were in violation so they didn't want it to pass. I don't know
So, I realize this is a year late, but I just came across it and found it interesting and useful. So, I am considering the purchase a piece of property in Somers and just finished reading through the zoning laws Regulations/Zoning Regulations.pdf as part of my due diligence.
All the zoning laws regarding horses and farm animals begin on page 63 of this pdf. I don't know if you ever plan to resubmit your petition, but there's a lot of stuff you might find useful in there. According to the laws as written anyone living in residential areas is allowed to keep poultry for non-commercial purposes. The written laws also state that the housing for the animals needs to be 200 feet from neighbors' property lines, but doesn't say anything about the actual animal. It seems like as long as you make sure the chickens stay on your property then they can legally roam free. I don't know if you were petitioning to keep the coop 25 feet from the property line, but if it was just about the chickens, then no matter what nonsense anyone says about attracting predators, or mucking up the ground water, they have no standing to say where your chickens can roam on your own property unless the town actually writes it into the zoning laws. By the way, that lady's little dogs will attract predators just as easily as your chickens, so you can turn that argument right around on her. Also, there are regulations about polluting the ground water, and keeping chickens for personal use is not even close, unless you are producing enough chicken manure that you need to apply for a special permit to build a second building to house it.

It's really exciting for me to come across this post through my "Somers CT agriculture zoning" google search, to hear from an actual resident. I currently live in another part of CT, where keeping non traditional pets is more regulated. I'm excited to be moving into an actual neighborhood, not just a pinterest neighborhood, of people who also love backyard farming.
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