Zionsville considers new animal ordinance to deal with chicken complaints

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ZIONSVILLE, Ind. (January 30, 2015) – Chickens wandering around neighborhoods in a central Indiana town are ruffling a few feathers.

Town officials in Zionsville are looking at changing an ordinance that would be stricter when it comes to dealing with animals.

The town’s current ordinance states that owners have to keep dogs contained on their property, but officials are considering changing the rules to include all animals.

Town officials say they’ve been hearing several complaints about chickens.

“Basically that they are roaming out of people’s yards, that they are not caged, that they are taking their liberties in other people’s yards and they are becoming a nuisance,” explains Susanna Suarez, with Zionsville Town Council.

Suarez is also concerned for the animals’ safety.

If the proposed ordinance passes it would allow a person to have no more than six chickens and roosters wouldn’t be allowed.

Most of Zionsville is considered rural.  The proposed ordinance would only be enforced in the urban district, which is where Mark Goodwin lives.

“This is a working farm. They want to tell me what I can and can’t have on my farm? I think they’re taking it too far,” explains Mark Goodwin, a chicken owner.

Goodwin says he doesn’t use his chickens for profit.

“Chickens are just personal use, me and my family, my mom and dad and sisters,” explains Goodwin.

Goodwin doesn’t feel like his chickens cause any problems.  The only problem he sees is with the town’s plan.

“I just don’t like it one bit,” admits Goodwin.

The town council will discuss the proposed ordinance at Monday’s meeting.

If passed it will take effect immediately.