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Eatontown Officials Look To Create Chicken Ordinance

EATONTOWN: Borough officials are looking to create an ordinance which would allow more people in town to raise chickens.

Chickens are currently not allowed in smaller yards and are only able to be kept on a farm or similar-sized property. Councilman Anthony Talerico has proposed relaxing this requirement so more people could have chickens, albeit with increased guidelines and restrictions.

"If done right, I do not believe the raising of chickens is a necessarily a detriment to neighbors," Talerico said. "My proposal is that we would go ahead and put a bunch of rules in place so that people aren't just going to go out to Lowe's for a coup and then buy some chickens."

Last October, two residents had received a letter that they had to remove their chickens. They residents allowed to appeal this decision to the Eatotown Zoning Board, but Talerico said that without a more well-defined set of guidelines in place, it would make it hard for the board to make a determination.

Talercico said he and Councilwoman Virginia East met with interested parties and looked at a couple model chicken ordinances from other towns and is now seeking permission to have the boroiugh's zoning officer create a "draft document" for a chicken ordinance.

"Without having some codified document, there is no starting point for discussion," Talerico said.

The council would then have to agree to allow the borough attorney formalize it and draft an ordinance for introduction and adoption.

Council members Talerico, Albert Baginsky and Patricia May voted to have the document drafted while council members Mark Regan and Donna Mazzella-Diedrichsen voted against it.

"If done right, I do not believe the raising of chickens is a necessarily a detriment to neighbors," Talerico said. "My proposal is that we would go ahead and put a bunch of rules in place so that people aren't just going to go out to Lowe's for a coup and then buy some chickens."

Mayor Dennis Connelly said he is not in favor of the proposed chicken ordinance.

"I just feel that most areas in our town are too close," Connelly said. "Any ordinance is going to disappoint people, there's no ordinance you can create that won't disappoint some people...it's also going to be burden to our zoning."


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