You would have had to be there. Just hearing the story retold doesn’t do it justice. But we’ll try.
The New Albany Board of Aldermen spent part of its meeting last week discussing chickens and roosters in residential areas of the city.
The topic came up because Ward One Alderman Jeff Olson asked that an ordinance be drawn up to ban them. Some of his neighbors have complained about roosters crowing and chickens running loose in their yards and in the streets.
The current ordinance prohibits keeping fowl, livestock or other animals except dogs, cats, birds and other household pets within 300 feet of the residence of any person who complains about it in writing.
Mayor Tim Kent said neighbors are reluctant to put their complaints in writing. Some have said privately that they fear retaliation against them or their pets.
Northside resident Jean Bufkin argued that keeping chickens is a new trend similar to community gardens, farmers’ markets and other efforts at sustainability. She defended her chickens and her rooster (inexplicably named Peggy) and then passed out deviled eggs to the aldermen.
Asked if it were a bribe, she laughed and said, “Yes.”
As we said, you had to be there.
But chickens in residential areas are no laughing matter. Chickens running loose are a health issue and they should be confined to areas zoned agricultural.
New Albany neighborhoods are not barnyards. The aldermen should fix the problem at their August meeting.