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The purpose of this section is to create appropriate regulations for the keeping of chickens as pets. The purpose of this section is not to create regulations for the commercial sale or distribution of chickens or eggs. For the purposes of this section, the term "chicken" includes only hens.
A. Conditions Of Keeping Chickens: The keeping of chickens within the city of Alton is prohibited without a permit and unless compliance with all of the conditions required by this section are maintained. A permit shall allow a maximum of five (5) chickens with no roosters.
1. A chicken coop and chicken run shall be required on all properties where chickens are kept.
2. The chicken coop shall accommodate all chickens permitted on the property, must be located in the rear yard, and must be a minimum distance of ten feet (10') from the nearest property line.
3. All chicken runs shall be located in the rear yard, be appropriately fenced to prevent the chickens from leaving the run, and be located at least ten feet (10') from the nearest property line.
4. The property must possess single-family residential zoning classification.
5. Free range chickens are not permitted. "Free range chickens", for the purpose of this section, are defined as chickens that are not restrained by a chicken coop or chicken run as permitted and approved pursuant to this section.
6. A metal sealable food container is required. Chicken feed shall be kept in a predatorproof/rodentproof container.
7. Waste material must be disposed of in a manner that will not cause odor, or attract flies or vermin.
8. All areas where chickens are kept shall be maintained to be neat and clean and free of undue accumulation of waste such as to prevent odors detectable on adjacent property.
9. No person shall allow chickens to produce noise loud enough to disturb the peace of persons in surrounding properties.
10. The owner of chickens shall ensure that their birds are cared for properly when ill and disposed of in a manner that does not endanger the public health and safety when their birds die.
11. The slaughtering of chickens kept in residential areas as authorized by these regulations is hereby prohibited.
12. No chickens may be kept or maintained to be used for the purpose of fighting.
13. City of Alton animal control officers and government health officials, or their designees, may inspect the conditions where the chickens are kept at any time.
14. The provisions of section 7-1-4 of this chapter shall not apply to chickens.
B. Procedures For Acquiring Chickens:
1. The person desiring chickens shall construct or have delivered a chicken coop of appropriate size and strength for the number of chickens they wish to own.
2. Agents of the city of Alton's animal control office, or their designees, shall inspect the chicken coop and chicken run before an initial permit may be issued. If they are found to be satisfactory, a document will be given to the resident and to the treasurer's office stating that they are entitled to maintain chickens. If the chicken coop and run are found to be unsatisfactory, the resident will be informed of defects and given an opportunity to rectify defects.
3. The resident will take the document issued by the animal control officer and pay the appropriate chicken coop and run permit fee at the city treasurer's office. The fee shall be an annual fee of twenty five dollars ($25.00) and may be renewed unless it is determined that the conditions of keeping chickens required by this section have not been maintained.
4. After the inspection approval and payment required herein, the resident may maintain up to five (5) chickens at one time.
C. Fines And Penalties: If a person keeping chickens fails to maintain the conditions of keeping chickens as required by this section, he or she shall be subject to prosecution for a violation of this section, with each day that the required conditions were not maintained being a separate offense. Upon conviction in the circuit court of a violation of this section, in addition to the fine or penalty that may be imposed by the court, the city treasurer shall revoke the permit previously granted to the person convicted. In addition, the provision of section 7-12-6 of this title shall also be applicable to permits issued in accordance with this section.
D. Permit Term; Late Fee: A permit, if not revoked, shall be valid until the next permitted period, June 1 of the next ensuing year. A new permit shall be obtained by each June 1 by every owner and a new fee paid. Anyone who fails to obtain the permit required by this chapter within the time as required by this section, shall be required to pay a late fee of seven dollars ($7.00) per permit for failure to timely obtain said permit in addition to the permit fee set forth in this section. (Ord. 7330, 10-24-2012)