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City of Brantford council to pass new poultry by-law

City of BrantfordCity of Brantford council to pass new poultry by-law

After much debate and conversation, the City of Brantford and the Brantford Chicken Association have come to an agreement on an amended by-law for chicken owners in the city, which was discussed during the Committee of the Whole Planning and Administration meeting on Tuesday, June 14.

The by-law, which still needs to be approved at the council meeting on Tuesday, June 28, outlines new rules and regulations that poultry owners in the city must follow.

The regulations include a limit of 10 chickens, with no more than one rooster included in the 10; a coop to keep chickens with requirements to include protection against predators, setbacks from structures on neighbouring properties, nesting, perches, cleaning and ventilation, litter, and bedding; and a permit process pertaining to the keeping, harbouring, and possessing of chickens.

During discussions at the meeting, Laurie Lloyd, a representative of the Brantford Chicken Association, said that their group has grown to 56 members with almost all of them already in accordance with the new regulations.

“Our members are located all over the city,” Lloyd said. “We haven’t had had any problems with any of our members. Everybody has been very upfront with what they have, what they’re doing and what the coops look like they. Everybody is doing everything they can to protect their chickens.”

The association takes education very seriously, using their Facebook page to share information about types of predators, breeds of chickens and tips and tricks for owners.

Some members of council showed concern with the by-law, fearing that roosters would cause too much noise in residential areas. Mayor Kevin Davis shared his firsthand experience with living next door to a rooster in a series of poultry puns.

“I’m no spring chicken when it comes to dealing with roosters,” Mayor Davis said. “You’ve heard me talk about this before we had a rooster in our neighbourhood that crowed at all hours not just at dawn. And I gotta tell you it seemed only to be quiet whenever the bylaw enforcement officer showed up.”

Mayor Davis proposed an amendment to not include roosters in the by-law.

Councillor Greg Martin stated that he would support the amendment stating that, “roosters are annoying and belong in the country, not the city.”

“I just don’t see the need to over regulate this,” Councillor Rose Sicoli said, disagreeing with the amendment. “We have the mechanisms in place for the bad seeds or repeat offenders. We don’t start banning dogs or cats or my neighbour’s sound system every time a noise complaint comes in, I don’t think we should be doing it here today.”

Mayor Davis’s amendment ultimately failed on a 3-8 vote, with only Councillors Greg Martin and Richard Carpenter joining Mayor Davis in voting in favour of. After it failed, Councillor Carpenter made a friendly amendment to the by-law requesting a 12-month review.

The newly amended by-law passed with a 10-1 vote, with only Councillor Carpenter opposed. The by-law will be officially voted on during the council meeting on Tuesday, June 28.

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