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Chickens Allowed in Fairmont City Limits

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Chickens can now cluck away in the City of Fairmont.

After the council's vote earlier this week, residents can now raise poultry right in their backyard. But the animals still can not roam completely free.

"They can have the chickens anywhere on their property that they like," said Mike Humpal, Fairmont city administrator.

The birds can now be raised right on a person's home within city limits.

"I think it's a good move for Fairmont," said Bob Charnecki, a Fairmont resident who has a chicken coup on his property.

Charnecki says he uses the animals as pets and for eggs.

"I think it was wise for Fairmont to move forward with that," Charnecki said. "We're also an ag community. We're a farming community, and I don't think we should ignore our farming background."

Fairmont City officials say residents can have up to 5 chickens on their property. The animals have to be contained, and roosters are not allowed due to noise.

"We allow a coup, but the coup can't be closer than 35 feet to a dwelling other than the residence that own the coup," said Humpal.

Fairmont resident Joseph Kreiss says he supports people who want to raise poultry in the city.

"It's no different than any pet," Kreiss said. "I think if we see them start wandering around in the streets and start causing some traffic hazards or a health hazard, then that becomes an issue."

Officials say residents do not need a permit nor do they need to be registered to have chickens within city limits.

City officials say only one councilor voted 'no' to the chicken ordinance.