Preliminary poultry proposal picked apart

By Gary Scott on April 16, 2015 at 1:07pm

Jacksonville aldermen decided not to put all of their eggs in one basket this week.

City council had a very tender discussion, but ultimately plucked the idea of expanding the allowance of chickens within city limits this week. Aldermen Lori Large Oldenettel and Bill Scott clucked thusly:

“I didn’t think the chicken ordinance was going to fly,” Oldenettel said.

“I think the committee was too chicken to vote for the chickens,” says Scott.

Scott noted the discussion took place at Monday’s Planning and Public Works Committee meeting after a family moving to the area called to inquire about the city’s current ordinance regarding keeping a chicken coop outside your human coop.

Currently, residents must be more than 200 feet away from other houses, but there is at least one exception to the rule. Ward 3 Alderman Bruce McDaniel notes he has two homes in the 3-hundred block of Pine that have chickens.

“I have not heard one complaint in the four years about it. These chickens are less than 200 feet from other residences. A lot of things are complaint-driven, and there’s no complains in that neighborhood. I’ve not had one person complain about them at all,” McDaniel says.

“In fact, we’ve gotten some eggs from one of them.”

Code enforcement officer Kelly Hall said it’s been a “long time” since a chicken complaint.