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Backyard Hens are Coming to Palatine

The Palatine Village Council voted 4-2 in favor of allowing petitioner Steven Brosio to house six hens in a chicken coop on his 1.8 acres of property.

The Palatine Village Council Monday approved a permit to allow resident Steven Brosio to have a chicken coop and house six hens, on his 1.8 acres of property at 624 W. Hill Road.

The issue has been in question in Palatine since it was first proposed in the spring of 2012. 

In early January, Brosio received unanimous approval from the Zoning Board of Appeals relating to his request. 

Three Palatine residents, and two individuals who live nearby to Brosio in unincorporated Cook County spoke in favor of his petition at the village council meeting Monday. Brosio sought an Accessory Unique Use Permit to allow the hens and the chicken coop on his property.

None of the 19 individuals [from 11 households] who previously signed a petition against the proposal attended the village council meeting.

Prior to the vote, District 2 Councilman Scott Lamerand said, “When you purchase a home in the village, there are a set of ordinances you are governed by. The rules of the game are such that this is outside of the scope of things, it is difficult to change things.”

Other councilmen voiced a different perspective.  

“I agree chicken coops don’t have a place in an urban setting, but this is a different setting, 1.8 acres…this is certainly a rural setting, different than all of our neighborhoods,” said Greg Solberg, District 4 councilman.

Brosio’s close to two acres of property opens up on one side to the bike path and there is a significant structure behind the chicken coop that divides it from residential properties , said Village Manager Reid Ottesen.

When the vote came, Kollin Kozlowski (District 5), Brad Helms (District 6), Aaron Del Mar (District 1) and Solberg voted in favor of Brosio's request. Lamerand and Mayor Jim Schwantz voted against it.

After the vote, Helms and Kozlowski explained why they voted as they did.

“This is a very unique piece of property, and we had to look at it that way,” Helms said.

“My feeling is that this sets a baseline for our community [in regards to Brosio's property size],” Kozlowski said.

Ottesen said with the approval comes conditions Brosio will have to adhere to. They include allowing only six hens, requiring a 20 foot setback for the chicken coop from property lines, and 40 feet from residential properties, prohibiting roosters, adding necessary fencing, and prohibiting the slaughter of chickens on the property.

Eggs produced from the hens also cannot be used for business or commercial purposes.

The village will require a six month review of Brosio's chicken coop and hens to ensure the public, and property values of nearby residents are being protected. The village also reserves the right to impose additional conditions to address concerns if they arise. 

In November of 2012, the Palatine Village Council denied a request from resident Vanessa Barsanti. Ottesen said any requests that have previously been turned down can be brought before the village council after a year's time has passed. 

Paul Shafer January 24, 2013 at 09:16 PM
Hey let's open a feral chicken rescue center at the old Anthem's.
Gina January 25, 2013 at 03:54 AM
Joemama, I would refer you to JJ Hawk's reply. We need to approach this rationally.
Eliona January 26, 2013 at 04:39 AM
Joemama, no chickens will give you that many eggs even in their first year. They are living things and are effected by the short daylight and some breeds do go broody. And no chicken keeper will throw out eggs. It is a nice thing to share with a neighbor. I think the rules were harsh and leave no room for other people with smaller lots than 2 acres. Looking at the conditions chickens live in the hatcheries that had the outbreaks should actually make more people want to raise their own eggs. We are lucky to be in Chicago and my 2 little kids are enjoying their chicken pets very much and their friends ask for playdates in our garden all the time. We didnt have neighbors complain and we take care about keeping things clean and tidy. We all were born and raised in the city but are enjoying this ` rural` experience with our birds very much. Chickens are fun to watch and take care off. And they are addictive. We started with 2 little fluffy chicks and now we have 4 beautiful different breeds. And I admit I want 3 more breeds that I really like. If you were close Joemama we would love to invite you for a coffee or tea....
Lisa Zink January 26, 2013 at 02:32 PM
I am agreeing with Eliona on this. I keep hens on a suburban property where it is legal (1.2 acres). Most of my neighbors do not even know I have a coop in my backyard. I do not have issues with predators even though there is a high population of coyotees in the area. My birds lay enough eggs for my family of five and we share the bounty with a few neighbors and friends when we have extras. If you want to be worried about salmonella outbreaks and recalls look to your large scale food supply: NOT a backyard hen.
Joemama March 05, 2013 at 05:24 PM
Check out this link to find your fresh eggs http://crystallake.patch.com/articles/local-csas-deliver-food-thats-fresh-from-the-farm-afbe0b85

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