The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

April 20, 2014

City to discuss chicken ordinance, animal control

DANVILLE — Residents love their pets — ranging from the furry to feathered kind — and let city officials know about it.

Mayor Scott Eisenhauer said two of the biggest issues he’s received phone calls about since he’s been mayor have been about the Danville Humane Society and the city allowing chickens in yards.

Members of the city council’s Public Services Committee will start discussions Tuesday about possibly allowing chickens inside the city’s limits due to citizen requests.

Committee members also will consider approving an extended intergovernmental agreement with Vermilion County for animal control services.

Eisenhauer said he’s probably heard from 12 to 15 people about backyard chickens/hens being allowed in the city limits. He said it’s been a big issue on the social media website Facebook, too. Some people have had chickens inside the city illegally and were caught, while others are interested in the idea of having chickens and raising them naturally and holistically, he said.

A concern Eisenhauer has is making the chickens prey for some of the area wildlife in the community. Eisenhauer added that the administration is not making any recommendation to aldermen about the issue.

“It was asked by constituents in the community,” he said.

“I like Champaign’s ordinance,” Eisenhauer said. Urbana allows chickens without a license. Under Champaign’s ordinance, the chickens or hens aren’t allowed to run loose in backyards and they’re limited to six to an owner.

Champaign’s recently approved hen ordinance from December requires a license and regulates the size of the chicken coop and run. Coops may only be located in the back yard. The coop must have a minimum of four square feet per hen. The run must have a minimum of eight square feet per hen and be covered on all sides, including the top. Champaign also references its noise and property maintenance ordinances with the chicken ordinance.

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