Vote From the Appleton Health Board!

An update on last Thursday morning’s Health Board mtg:

  • Two amendments were made to the ordinance/rules & reg’s: to remove the neighbor approval requirement (3 to 2 vote), and to set a minimum of 3 sq feet/bird for the coop (5 to 0 vote). Both of these amendments are supported by City Peeps leadership team.
  • The amended Ordinance and Rules & Regulations passed by a 4 to 1 vote, which means that this goes to Common Council next.

The vast majority of speakers last Thursday were chicken supporters. The concerns expressed today were much more reality-based, and much less fear-based, which is a good thing. The major concerns shared by Health Board were:

  • Impact on city staff workload
  • How to deal with the “bad apples”
  • Equity based on lot size/set-back requirements

These are all concerns that City Peeps share with City Staff, and with people on both sides of the chicken issue. Reality-based concerns can actually be dealt with and solved.

These concerns in more detail…

Impact on city staff workload: city staff is already stretched, whether it be Health Department, Building Inspections, Police. It was estimated that each license holder will add 3 hours of workload to Health Dept and 1 hour to Building Inspections. Police workload additions would most-likely be case-by-case and related to a few bad apples who are irresponsible in chicken raising. Health Board was estimating there would be 100 licenses sought in Appleton, which would equate to 300 extra work hours for Health, and 100 extra hours for Inspections. We believe that number is far larger than reality. Last year Madison had approx 100 licenses, and Green Bay had 12-15. In the coming week, we’ll be doing more research so that we can offer a best-guess estimate as to the number of license holders Appleton will likely see.

Dealing with “bad apples”: after the mtg this morning, 4 Peeps Leadership folks met briefly with Cathy Spears (the lone “no vote”), and we may have stumbled upon another idea that would accomplish what the neighbor approval requirement was trying to do (eliminate the people who will not responsibility raise chickens), while protecting the responsible chicken owners from unjust veto power by neighbors. Dealing proactively with the “bad apples” is in City Peeps best interest, and it also helps limit city staff workload issues & headaches. We’ll be researching this idea prior to the City Council meeting next Wednesday.

More details as they become available!


We Need Help With the Final Push

The Appleton Health Board will likely be voting on a Chicken ordinance on Wednesday, June 6 at their 7am mtg. And, if it passes, it will go to the full council for a vote, which could happen as early as that same night.

We have 3 weeks to make a final push for chickens in Appleton! And we need help.

Please everyone contact your Alderperson and let him or her know that you support chickens & why. The FAQ sheet can help you answer any questions the Alderperson may have. Contacting your Alderperson can be as simple as a quick email saying who you are, where you live, and that you support chickens and you hope he or she will too. This can really mean a lot.

To find/contact your Alderperson:

  • click on the My Neighborhood icon on the city home page ( ).
  • Once in My Neighborhood, enter your street address as requested and click on “submit”.
  • Your property ID number and address should appear on the screen.
  • Click on the property ID number (in blue) on the left side of the property information.
  • When your property information is shown, click on the “Voting” tab to obtain your Alderperson information.
  • To contact your Alderperson, click on his or her name. Contact information should appear.

But, don’t stop there! You can also send an email to the entire City Council here:

Thank you all for your help!!

Nice Post-Crescent Article on City Peeps

The Appleton Post-Crescent ran an article yesterday on the current status of City Peeps’ efforts to encourage an ordinance on allowing urban chickens: Citizen group pushes Appleton to reverse ban on raising backyard hens. Adlerpersons Joe Martin and Christoph Wahl have been instrumental in getting a resolution introduced for the Appleton City Council.

Hopefully, the Appleton Health Department will see that many other Wisconsin municipalities have passed urban chicken allowances without incident. To see research that’s been done on other chicken laws in Wisconsin see here. In the end these townships and municipalities have had nearly zero issues with urban chickens.

Thank you to the Post-Crescent for publishing an unbiased article!