Waupun Council Gives Go-Ahead To Begin Drafting Chicken Ordinance

(Waupun) The Waupun Common Council gave the go-ahead Tuesday night to begin drafting an ordinance that would allow residents to house hens within city limits. In recent months a group of residents began circulating a petition requesting the city to explore the creation of an urban chicken ordinance. City Administrator Kathy Schlieve says the petition received strong support but noted that there were a few detractors. She says there were around 500 signatures in support of the chicken ordinance but the city did receive several emails from those who were opposed. Schlieve says those in opposition are concerned about sanitation, rodents and overall ability to enforce such an ordinance. During last night’s council meeting, city officials noted that the issue appeared to be a 50-50 split of those in favor of backyard poultry and those against it.  Schlieve says all voices should be heard before anything is adopted to make sure that everyone’s rights are respected. Schlieve says Waupun looked at other communities that have similar laws on the books including Watertown and Fox Lake. She also recommends that issues such as number of birds allowed per parcel, applications and consent, slaughter, commercial use, nuisance and animal control should be reviewed before the council takes up a vote. City Attorney Daniel Vande Zande says the draft ordinance should be completed by end of April.