BEAVERCREEK — Proposed changes to the Beavercreek zoning code would allow for chickens to be kept at residences in the city.
According to draft legislation for the changes, chickens would be allowed at properties where agricultural activity is permitted or on properties used for one-family residential purposes. Six chickens would be allowed on the one-family properties, on lots 15,000 square feet in size or greater and would have to be kept in a pen or coop in the rear of the property.
Roosters would not be permitted, according to the legislation.
No chickens would be permitted to be housed on multi-family or two-family residentially zoned properties. Those wanting to keep chickens would have to apply for a permit with the city.
The legislation also contains a sunset provision, which would require city council to reapprove the ordinance after one year.
Beavercreek Planning Commission considered the changes at its May 4 meeting and voted to table the issue after commissioners suggested several changes to the ordinance.
Citizens at the meeting spoke in favor of the change, classifying chickens as “pets with benefits.”
“Why chickens?” Jim Reisen said. “…They give so much and ask so little.”
“Chickens have a great benefit: the fresh eggs is the big one,” Bill Goessl said. “They eat a lot of bugs, mosquitoes. They’re not smelly. They’re not noisy. When was the last time you heard of a chicken biting someone, on the news?”
Additional changes being proposed to the zoning code relate to making the city’s sign code “as content neutral as possible,” according to memo written by associate city planner Sandra Pereira.
The changes result from a 2015 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court about municipalities differentiating between types of signs (political signs, real estate signs, menu boards, etc.), which constitutes regulating content and violates the First Amendment, according to the memo.
Reach Nathan Pilling at 937-502-4498 or on Twitter @XDGNatePilling.