Supervisors To Hear Proposed Zoning Changes For Keeping Of Chickens

At its February 8, 2011, meeting, the Placer County Board of Supervisors will hear a proposed Zoning Text Amendment to County Zoning Ordinance relating to the keeping of fowl and poultry. The Board will also be asked to adopt an environmental document allowing for the change. The Planning Services Division of the County’s Community Development Resource Agency will recommend to the Board the number of fowl/poultry that can be kept on certain residential lots in Placer County.

The proposed changes would allow the keeping of six chicken hens in residential single-family (RS), residential multi-family (RM), and resort zone (RES) districts. The proposed changes would not apply to the Lake Tahoe Basin, where both Placer County and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) have zoning jurisdiction. TRPA currently requires a two-acre lot minimum for keeping chickens and is currently working on an update to its Regional Plan. Placer County has asked TRPA to consider including the raising of chicken hens on single-family residential lots as a part of that update.

“The raising of chickens in an urban environment is part of a growing movement of people who want to raise their own food for health and financial reasons,” said Planning Director Michael Johnson. “There are numerous other agencies in the local area, including the cities of Roseville, Folsom and Auburn, that have already adopted similar ordinances, and staff is bringing forward this proposed Zoning Text Amendment in an effort to be responsive to this trend”.

At its July 22, 2010 meeting, the Placer County Planning Commission unanimously approved the proposed Zoning Text Amendment and, following procedure, referred the matter to the Board of Supervisors. In forwarding its recommendation, the Planning Commission concluded that any potential issues that may be associated with the keeping of fowl and poultry on residential properties were properly within the text of the ordinance.

The proposed Zoning Text Amendment addresses the raising and keeping of chicken hens and does not include potentially nuisance/noise producing fowl including roosters, guinea hens and birds from the peacock family.