No Backyard Hens for Palatine

A neighbor objected saying allowing a coop would bring down her home's value and would attract predators.

A couple that has been working to bring backyard hens to Palatine won’t be eating fresh eggs anytime soon unless they can reach an agreement with their neighbor.

The Palatine village council voted Monday to table Vanessa and Jason Barsanti’s request to house hens after a neighbor appeared before the board and objected. 

Ann Harrison, who lives in the 300 block of Elm Street, said she is concerned that allowing chickens in backyards would bring predators—such as coyotes—to the area, as well as reduce the value of her family’s home, which she estimates is worth more than $500,000.

“It is my belief and conclusion that having a chicken coop would affect the resale of my home, which is a huge investment of our family financially, and we continue to invest in yearly,” Harrison said. “I don’t think we should be penalized if we chose to buy a residential area with a half acre.”

The zoning board unanimously recommended approval at its July 24 hearing, and for the most part, the Barsanti’s neighbors gave their consent for the chickens. However, the village did receive one letter of objection and Councilman Jim Clegg said he spoke to someone who was also against the hens.

The Barsantis, who live near the intersection of W. Daniels Road and S. Elm Street, have a large garden and several trees on their half-acre property. If the council had approved the special use for an accessory unique use to permit the Barsanti’s to raise chickens in their backyard, their case would have served as the benchmark for all future backyard hen requests.

Both Councilman Clegg and Councilman Aaron Del Mar asked whether allowing chickens would be a slippery slope for permitting other livestock such as sheep, goats, ducks and peacocks.

Village manager Reid Ottesen said that with every single request that comes forward the village looks at their business plan, how they use their lot and its size, animal type. 

“I don’t think it would be right of us to say, ‘well, you can allow this, but we can’t allow that,’” Ottesen said. “Every single special use that comes before you is unique unto that property.”

While the committee of the whole voted 6-1 to deny the Barsanti’s request for a backyard chicken coop for egg production, the village council deferred any final action to give the two neighbors time to potentially work out an agreement. Councilman Kollin Kozlowski was the only board member who voted in favor.

In September 2010, . However, in February 2012 Arlington Heights voted no on allowing chicken coops.

Joemama August 10, 2012 at 04:30 PM
"While the committee of the whole voted 6-1 to deny the Barsanti’s request for a backyard chicken coop for egg production, the village council deferred any final action to give the two neighbors time to potentially work out an agreement." LOOKS LIKE IT WAS DENYED TO ME! And the next time it coms up I'll make sure there are more then your one neighbor to object to it also.
Vanessa August 10, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Joemama, exactly, it says right in the sentence you quoted final action was deferred. What do you care about whether or not my husband get a chicken coop anyway? Do you live anywhere near us? This was not an ordinance change suggestion, but a special use application that would grant my husband and I, and only my husband and I, the ability to have a coop. So unless you live near us, which I can't ascertain since you don't put your real name up in comments, it doesn't even affect you. Why spend the time and energy into arguing and trying to hurt people if you aren't even personally affected by this?
Vanessa August 10, 2012 at 04:48 PM
Additionally, if our application ultimately does get finally denied, I will move on. Move on to building a beehive in our backyard which is perfectly legal in Palatine.
Joemama August 10, 2012 at 04:59 PM
Vanessa, I do live in Palatine and have my hole life in the pleasnt hill area. I also remember as a child chickens being at homes in the downtown area along with the smell and waste that were left by them. As for my name that is what everyone calls me I don’t need to hide from anyone.
Joemama August 10, 2012 at 05:01 PM
Well I hope you attract killer bees for your killer Attitude
Vanessa August 10, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Pleasant Hill isn't near close enough to my house to be remotely affected by this. I haven't been mean to you, there is no reason for you to wish harm on me. If you ever want to sit down and have a real conversation face to face about the chicken coop issue I would be more than happy to talk to you. Beyond that, I just won't spend anymore time on here. I hope you have a good weekend.
Mike August 10, 2012 at 08:55 PM
Vanessa- I live in Unincorporated Lake County near Palatine. We have Chickens and Bees! There are lots in our subdivision for sale, we would love to have you as a neighbor! If you need help with anything with the bees you are more then welcome to visit us! e-mail at behrenslandscape@aol.com
Jim August 11, 2012 at 02:38 AM
Ok, watched the Village Council meeting, couple of questions 1) Attraction of rodents. 1) You have the barriers to protects your chickens, and parts of your yard fenced six feet high, but would still attract wildlife into your yard and others. How would that be addressed? And where would the feed be kept and how would it be stored as not to attract rodents? 2) Noise, when they get excited or scared you can certainly hear them. Especially at night when a raccoon does try to enter the coop. 3) Looking at non-flighty birds, but if they decide to take off a six foot fence will not hold them in, now what running after them? 4) Inspection - comment made to call first - isnt the point to do an unannounced inspection? 5) Cleaning the pen itself? with six chickens they will have it down to bare ground in no time. How will it be maintained. 6) It was mentioned only the owners would come in contact with waste while cleaning the coop, yet it was also mentioned a 13 yr old neighbor would take of the chickens if they were on vacation - so the coop would not be cleaned while your away? Or other people in fact would come in contact with the waste? 7) In order for your dogs not to get excited at seeing the chickens, young chicks would be purchased and then kept in the house for a time period - chickens in the house? - one heck of a chicken coop!
Vanessa August 11, 2012 at 02:46 AM
Jim, I think you've misstated a lot of things on here and you also just don't have the knowledge regarding a few others. If you'd like to have a real conversation about it by phone or face to face I'm happy to do so. Unfortunately, I just can't deal with Patch comments anymore.
Ron August 11, 2012 at 01:50 PM
Vanessa, A child will hold his breath until he turns blue to get what he wants from Mommy and Daddy. If you can’t get chickens you will get bees cause you’ll show them who’s boss and they will be sorry they ever told you no. You “can’t deal with patch comments anymore”…. May I be so bold to suggest that you do not deal with the comments. All the comments are directed at your comments. GIVE IT A REST! and this silly tossing of chicken poop will end. You are egging us on.
Ralph Andaas August 11, 2012 at 02:59 PM
I'm a palatine resident as well. And don't see a problem with having a coop as long as its maintained. Fresh eggs have benefits I'm not exactly sure what they are but my grandfather could tell you if he was still alive.
Emily August 11, 2012 at 04:01 PM
The opinions expressed here are truly sad and ignorant. Tim, as a farmer to say "I think that farming should be left to the farmers! If you want chickens buy a farm!" BLOWS MY MIND!! And to follow that up with information on how to contact your to buy your goods.....yeah....no thanks! I myself own chickens and spend an hour a day tending to them and making sure that they are healthy and their area is clean. I have NEVER EVER had a problem with my chickens smelling however the pile of crap that my dog takes next to the coop every day sure does! We live in a time of war and a struggling economy. EVERYONE should have the right to raise their own food and to RESPECT the food that they raise. But again, the opinions expressed here are truly a reflection of the selfish society that we live in and why raise your own food when you can just go to the store and buy crap? But thats a whole other problem.... This entire thing is such a shame.
Ellen August 11, 2012 at 04:52 PM
Venessa, wow, talk about having nothing better to do. You look up my history of comments? I am allergic to farm animals and most certainly wouldn't want your smelly chickens in my backyard. How much do you expect your neighbors to put up with so you can have a few "superior" eggs to eat? If you are so concerned about the environment and sustainability then you should know that meat and dairy eaters are helping to kill the planet.
Ellen August 11, 2012 at 05:02 PM
Ellen August 11, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Venessa, you make a point of saying that this would only apply to you as a special use. What makes you so special, in your own mind?
Ron August 11, 2012 at 05:50 PM
Emily, It is so nice to hear from someone who dos NOT live in Palatine and will NOT be affected by any decision regarding chickens in Palatine jump into our chicken poop slinging carnival game. Please feel free to call the posters on this site sad and ignorant and I am glad you told us we are in a time of war and struggling economy . WOW! What a revelation. As a busybody I am sure you have no friends and from your comments on this site it is obvious why. I could ask you to go away but I am sure you do not know what that means. However; Don’t quit your day job.
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 12:08 AM
Learn how to spell, "Joemama."
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 12:10 AM
She has only responded to the rest of you people's comments. Why don't you leave it alone. Clearly she's done a ton of work on this and knows her stuff. Good one on the pun though.
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 12:10 AM
Agree Emily!
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 12:11 AM
What the hell kind of question is that? Grow up.
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 12:16 AM
Who the hell says they are allergic to farm animals? Every single one of them? You are out of your mind. And uh, meat and dairy eating has nothing to do with egg eating crazy woman. And again, learn to spell.
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Vanessa, Joemama's name is Joe Kendall and I believe he lives at 138 S. Cedar St. in Palatine.
Ellen August 12, 2012 at 12:55 AM
Sophie, 1. I wasn't talking to you and wouldn't talk to you since you seem to have an anger management problem and 2. it is a completely valid question.
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 01:11 AM
You wouldn't mind if I joined in if I supported your view. But because I oppose it you have a problem. Free speech baby! And despite your proclamation that you "wouldn't talk to me" you are talking to me. But hey, at least you spelled correctly this time around. Nothing about what I said indicates an anger management problem, it just indicates that, in my opinion, for the most part those of you opposing a chicken coop have nothing intelligent to say. But hey, you probably think the same about me, so surprisingly we have something in common! Why don't you educate yourself on the special use application process a little, or even the definition of special? Special doesn't mean exceptional, it means unusual or uncommon in this context. It is how the city accommodates requests outside the code (like larger sheds, unusual fences, etc.). I'd say a chicken coop in Palatine fits the definition of what a special use is and therefore needs a special use application to be considered.
Ellen August 12, 2012 at 01:32 AM
I'm not the one looking for for something special here. The person who is mostly seems to be making enemies here - and that is my idea of "crazy". And, having a spoiled brat of a child backing you is even crazier.
Sophie Masterson August 12, 2012 at 01:44 AM
Even if I was spoiled, nothing I have said on here indicates that I have been overindulged and that I am not grateful for/do not work for the things I have. Between the spelling problems and the understanding of the English language issues you have, I think it might be a good idea for you to take a refresher writing course or two. I don't know Vanessa, and I frankly don't give a damn what she does on her property or whether she gets chickens. I just had to speak up at the absolute ignorance and idiocy on here. I too have now looked at your comment history on here Ellen and all you seem to do on Patch is troll for fights. So enjoy your pathetic excuse for a hobby, because I'm done with you.
JJ Hawk August 12, 2012 at 05:15 AM
Speaking of pathetic, I'm on patch after midnight, listening to dogs bark at least a couple of houses down. I'm sure they're barking at the skunks that have been prowling the neighborhood for weeks digging up yards eating all the grubs that chickens could be eating. I'm glad I don't have to worry about chickens attracting predators though, they seem to be attracted just fine. I also bet I wouldn't hear chickens at this hour. I say lets ban dogs too! Good night.
Seeker August 12, 2012 at 07:44 PM
Give chickens a chance
Ellen August 16, 2012 at 06:02 PM
Sophie, Sorry about your spelling and grammar OCD issues. No one cares about spelling on the Internet - except those with OCD.
Corrine August 17, 2012 at 12:21 AM
The eggs we get in the stores are already 3 months old they are not fresh. Fresh eggs are amazing. I am sorry that this did not pass. The hens would be less of an annoyance than some neighbors cats that crap in our yards!!!


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