to Legalize Chickens in the City of Boston

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    Boston City Council
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    Legalize Chickens in Boston
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We, the undersigned citizens of Boston, Massachusetts, believe that chickens belong within the city limits in residential areas, with reasonable rules for the safety and comfort of all. The current permitting process for backyard chickens makes it nearly impossible to legally and responsibly have a backyard flock. The City's permitting process should more easily allow a small number of backyard hens for the following reasons:

-- Chickens produce a rich fertilizer by-product, high in nitrogen, eliminating the need for petrochemical fertilizers.
-- Chickens eat insects, including ticks, reducing our backyard pest population, and allowing for reduced use of pesticides.
-- Backyard hens provide an educational opportunity to teach children where our food comes from and demonstrate responsible pet ownership.
-- Fresh, naturally raised eggs have an improved nutrient profile compared to conventional eggs.
-- Chickens eat table scrapes, reducing municipal solid waste.
-- A properly cleaned and maintained chicken coop poses no sanitation risks.

By amending the permitting process to allow residents to keep a limited number of hens in residential zones, the City of Boston will encourage stewardship of the environment and food production on a household scale, in line with the City's goals for environmental sustainability and support of local food.