In a follow up to the chicken flap in Walton County, there is some good news for Christina Kluge. She reports that a new coop is in, courtesy of a good neighbor and the kindness of friends – old and new. It means she gets to keep her chickens, but they have been relocated to the neighbor’s property for the time being.
“The Code enforcement said my ‘new’ coop is in a good spot, and he will sign off on it! YAHOOOOOOOOO,” Kluge wrote. “Now to get the zoning amended so I can eventually move them back.”
A complaint by someone had Walton County code enforcement pay Kluge a visit a week or so back, forcing her to find alternative accommodation for her chickens. Kluge, who refers to the birds as her “girls,” said they are pet chickens and when she got them she was not aware that it was not allowed under the Walton County Zoning Ordinance. She now has a petition going to drum up support to get the ordinance changed, not just for her and her “girls,” but also other chicken owners who may not know that they too are in violation.
“I really want this story to get out to all,” Kluge said. “Boss Brothers just got another 300 chicks in. People are buying these babies with no idea they cannot have them.”
Susan Boss said she is supporting Kluge in her endeavor, saying more and more of her business is coming from people in the area with backyard flocks.
“I told her I would go with her to the Walton County Board of Commission meeting,” Boss said. “I think there are many people who may have backyard flocks who are not aware of the ordinance.”
Walton County is not alone in dealing with this issue. As people look to eating more healthy foods, more backyard chickens are being kept for fresh eggs. Paulding and Cobb counties have similar battles going on at the moment as well. Kluge has decided to following in the path of “The Chicken Chick” in Connecticut who is in a similar battle and solicit the help of anther bird to build solidarity for her cause.
“I’m getting over 50 pink flamingos in soon. I’m going to put some in my yard in support of having chickens. I spoke to Susan Boss at Boss Brothers Country Store, and she is going to put them in her store so folks can get one to put in their yard in support of amending the code ordinance,” Kluge said. “‘The Chicken Chick’ has started this in CT.. She was in a fight to keep hers on her property, and won. But her town of Suffield still does not allow them, so she is in the same fight as me. She told me that there are a lot of pink flamingos in yards!”
Kluge plans to address the Walton County BOC in May and in the meantime is soliciting signatures through an online petition. If you support the cause, you can click on this link and sign the petition. You also pick up a pink flamingo from Boss Brothers store and place it in your yard as a show of solidarity.
Since there was somebody who complained, there obviously are people who don’t agree with any changes to the ordinance. If the item is placed on the agenda following the May meeting, anybody who is not in support of any changes to the ordinance will then have an opportunity to voice their opposition prior to any vote being taken by the BOC.