At an informational meeting for the Fayette Village Council Thursday, October 16, administrator Steve Blue opened with the question, “What animals should we allow within village limits?”
A small slide show followed for the roughly 20 people in attendance at the school as those present learned what the village ordinance presently states. Right now, animals allowed are goats, horses, swine, rabbits and anything not specifically listed. The ordinance also prohibits, exotic animals, dangerous animals, cattle, sheep and all fowl.
Benefits of the animals are organic eggs, organic fertilizers and meat if in quantity. Drawbacks include noise, odors, predators, rodents, and pests. Recent request have been for chickens, horses, and ducks to be allowed and complaints have been registered against chickens and goats.
Largely at question is whether Fayette residents can have chickens. Sherry Rennin had 8 chickens (hens not roosters) on her property until recently when complaints brought the police to her door and she was asked to remove them which she complied in doing.
Ms. Rennin feels it is her right to raise her own food. She stated in a town with two feed stores, citizens should be allowed to support these businesses by purchasing items to care for their animals. She went on to add that she is a responsible owner and her chickens are well cared for. She noted many other towns including Wauseon and Toledo allow animals and she hopes to be allowed to have her chickens come back to her home.
Rodney Kessler stated he lives next to a property that has chicken and goat neighbors and he is not offended by odors and sounds. He claims the empty house on the other side of him is more of a nuisance than the animals are.
Ed Jarwinski sells goats to many in urban areas and says he’s had several Fayette residents inquire about getting goats from him for things such as brush control. He says there is a movement and interest to have the animals by considerate people.
Anita VanZile spoke up that as long term government officials know, something as simple as a chicken is a big deal. She understands all natural methods requested by residents but knows village officials expect accountability from owners requesting changes and hopes a compromise can be reached.
That may not be possible though as several in attendance spoke up that they are against chickens in the village limits.
Dee Lawrence stated the present ordinance in place says no to chickens and it should stay that way. John Martin agreed and hopes the public servants will serve the public speaking out. Jackie Blue feels it’s a health hazard and questions why the village is even discussing a ordinance that already says no.
Jim Crawford lives in the country and says over the years he’s raised all kinds of animals and says chickens are the dirtiest of them all. If the manure is not taken care of it creates a big mess. He doesn’t want to see this issue bring the town down and suggested if you want animals, live in the country where you can have acreage.
Kirk Keiser noted that he does feel the ordinance needs cleaned up and officials need to do what’s best for the village. He noted the option of allowing other animals on a permit basis could be a good alternative as it will take employees and resources to enforce any changes made to the present ordinance.
A permit option is one of three possibilities the village is looking at. The decision is to either prohibit completely, allow certain animals that meet requirements or allow certain animals on a permit basis that consists of an application and permit fees. This decision will continue to be discussed through council meetings.
Mayor Marlatt and Administrator Blue thanked all for coming and voicing their opinions and encouraged anyone who was unable to make it to let them know how they feel by stopping in to the village office, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 419-237-2116.