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Mayor breaks tie to allow chickens in Appleton

council vote was 7-7 with one member absent

Post Date:03/16/2017 9:43 AM

Mayor Hanna broke the tie vote Wednesday night to allow residents to raise up to four chickens in the City under a proposed new ordinance.

Several months of discussion at the Board of Health culminated with council members debating the issue for about an hour before coming to a 7-7 vote. Council president Kathy Plank was absent from Wednesday night's meeting. With the tie, Mayor Hanna cast the deciding vote to move the process forward.

Voting for the resolution with the mayor were alderpersons Siebers, Mann, Coenen, Lobner, Reed, Meltzer and Martin. Voting against were alderpersons Konetzke, Baranowski, Jirschele, Dannecker, Williams, Spears, Croatt

What's Next

Despite the approval from council, there are still several other steps before residents can apply for a permit.Chickens in coop Before the next council meeting on April 5, city staff will draft the ordinance based on language and rules from the resolution passed Wednesday night. 

The ordinance will be on the April 5 council agenda for a vote. Council members can debate possible changes to the ordinance or pass it as proposed. Any council member could also refer the ordinance back to the Board of Health for the board to make changes before it would come back to council for a vote at a future meeting. 

Also, as per council rule, alderperson Plank could ask to have the vote reconsidered at the April 5 meeting since she was absent Wednesday night. That would require a vote from the council to first allow the reconsideration, then another vote on the resolution on whether or not to allow chickens in the city. That vote could occur at the meeting on April 5, or the resolution could be referred back to the Board of Health for more discussion at it's next meeting.

When would it take effect?

If the ordinance passes on April 5 and council does not reconsider the vote on the resolution, the earliest that residents would be able to apply for a permit with the city would be April 11.

Rules drafted by staff call for a $145 pre-inspection fee and a $59 annual permit. Roosters would not be allowed, but residents in single-family or two-family homes would be allowed to raise up to four hens. 

Appleton Communications Coordinator Chad Doran can be reached at (920) 832-5814 or

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