Yakima considers rules on urban chickens

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YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) -- The Yakima City Council is considering recommendations to allow residents to keep up four hens under city code but no roosters.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports the issue of raising urban chickens is gray area under city code. City planners found that dozens of cities across the country, including Seattle and Portland, have struggled to devise sensible rules for backyard chickens. No two cities have the same rules.

City Councilwoman Kathy Coffey says city officials are trying to craft codes that balance noise complaints and sanitation with the desire by chicken lovers to have fresh eggs and know where their food comes from.

The city planning commission has recommended setbacks for coops of 10 feet from homes or property lines. The city council is expected to decide in the fall.

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Information from: Yakima Herald-Republic, http://www.yakimaherald.com