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Commissioner McCarty wants to permit chicken keeping

Fayette County Commissioner Allen McCarty wants to change the county’s zoning ordinances to allow citizens to raise up to a dozen female chickens in all zoning districts, except for subdivisions in which such is prevented by neighborhood associations.

The matter will be discussed at Thursday night’s commission meeting, which starts at the county’s Stonewall government complex in Fayetteville at 7 p.m.

Currently county ordinances only allow chickens to be raised in a district zoned for agricultural-residential use, which requires a minimum lot size of five acres.

County Zoning Director Pete Frisina will be asking the commission Thursday if there is enough interest in pursuing the concept so he can propose official amendments to the county’s zoning ordinance to allow the chicken-raising in all zoning districts, according to a memo issued to the commission.

Currently chickens are listed as livestock under the ordinances, which specifically prohibits animals on all lots except those zoned AR, including horses, cattle, goats, sheep, pigs, ducks, geese, mules, rabbits, ostrich, buffalo, fox, mink and llamas.

The agenda request form for the item notes that chickens “provide major insect control, eggs for family and neighbors consumption, can be kept as pets and often provide chicken dinners which helps families control their food budgets. Allowing chickens will also help maintain Fayette County’s rural character.”

Earlier this year, a pro-chicken raising group made an unsuccessful bid to launch a chicken-raising pilot program in Peachtree City.

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