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Chickens could be new village residents PDF Print E-mail
Written by JOE POIRIER   
Wednesday, 26 July 2017 19:36

Plan Commission recommends ordinance that would allow four birds per household

    Chickens may become the new trendy pet in the Village of Grafton.
    The Plan Commission held a public hearing on Tuesday for a potential ordinance that would allow residents to own chickens.
    “My family and I are excited about the new ordinance for keeping domesticated chickens,” said Rachel Mumme, one of the petitioners for the ordinance. “We see this as an opportunity to teach our children about the source of our food in a direct way, and to be responsible for the birds and for what comes to our table.
    “Keeping chickens is a great way to reduce food waste, help control backyard bugs and fertilize the garden. Plus, from all we’ve seen, chickens are just plain fun and make great pets.”  
    In Ozaukee County, outside of townships, chickens are allowed in the Village of Fredonia, and the cities of Mequon and Cedarburg.
    The drafted ordinance says residents can keep a maximum of four hens and no roosters. The permit would be issued by the inspection department with a $50 application fee and a $25 annual renewal permit.
    Chickens must be kept in a coop and pen, which must be in clean condition at all times. The coops must be located at least 40 feet from neighboring houses.
    The coop must provide no less than three cubic feet of space per chicken and be connected to a secured and fully ventilated pen with an appropriately sized nesting box, which can’t exceed two chickens per box, the draft ordinance says.
    It also says chickens must be kept as pets for personal use only with no owner selling or bartering eggs or engaging in chicken breeding for commercial purpose. No slaughtering is allowed.
    Wolff said owners must register their chickens with the state, like any other farm animal.
    “If there were any issues with diseases like the bird flu, we could pull those records of the owners from the state,” Wolff said.
    The permits would not be issued to any multi-residential properties, which include condominiums and duplexes.
    The Plan Commission recommended its approval to the Village Board, which will decide the fate of the chickens in August.

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