Chickens may find new roost in Norwood

NORWOOD, Ohio - Jeanne Stanton and her family started raising chickens in theirbackyard last Easter.

"They're very sweet," she says.

They didn't know they were breaking the law.

"We got a knock on the door on a Friday afternoon," she says."The Health Commissioner said, 'You're not allowed to have chickensin Norwood'."

The Stantons were stunned.

The chickens were, well, family. "We come out here on the swingand talk with the chickens," she says. " We hang out with thechickens."

Plus, she says they lay between two and seven eggs a day duringthe warmer months.

So Jeanne and her husband petitioned Norwood City Council tokeep their birds.

Their argument was how keeping chickens reduced their carbonfootprint by producing their own food, and saving money byrecycling much of their kitchen and garden waste.

"It was something we agreed to take a look at," sayscouncilmember Donna Laake.

"We found it a reasonable explanation and liked the way sheapproached it, agrees councilmember Steve Thornbury. "So we took itup with the law department and had them put together an ordinanceto give her some satisfaction."

The first draft of the modified ordinance allows for residentsto have up to 7 hens, but no roosters.

Despite Mayor Thomas Williams calling the legislation a 'wasteof time,' Thornbury sees the ordinance passing unanimously.

He sees it adding an eclectic touch to the city's image. "It'sjust a fun little thing about Norwood that you can add to thelist."

For those who are wondering, if the city is allowing chickens,Thornbury says  other livestock will have to remain in thebarnyard.  "I don't see any cattle ranches starting in Norwoodanytime soon."

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