City to Evaluate Chicken Ordinance

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The “Goldenrod 6” chickens have at least one more month at their Corona del Mar home.

the Newport Beach City Council decided Tuesday that they will discuss the ordinance governing the hens in about a month, after the city staff researches the issue and reports back.

Mayor Nancy Gardner suggested the action during council announcements near the beginning of the meeting.

“I think it might be good at least look at it and have that conversation,” Gardner said.

The rest of the council members agreed.

“There’s been a considerable amount of clucking on this issue so far,” said Councilman Mike Henn.

One of Resk's chickens. — Photo courtesy Michael Resk

During public comments, Michael Resk, the owner of the six hens at the center of the conversation, spoke up.

“I’ve affectionately become known as the chicken man,” Resk said.

Resk thanked the council for reviewing the ordinance and said he is looking forward to the city’s report next month. He also encouraged council members to visit the hens’ facebook page.

Has the ordinance outlived it’s usefulness? If it’s modified, what changes should be made? Is it best the way it is? These are all questions that the city hopes to answer, Gardner said earlier this month.

The report by city staff is also expected to look at other cities in more detail and how they handle animal regulations.

The “Goldenrod 6” hens been at the center of a flap in Corona del Mar since a neighbor filed a noise complaint in mid-December.

The chickens, considered livestock, are in violation of a city ordinance. Animal Control visited Resk in December and told him to get rid of the hens.

The code classifies poultry as livestock, Resk said in December, but his hens, he argued, are more like pets.

City Manager Dave Kiff has put a hold on the enforcement of the ordinance so the City Council can look at the issue.

“The Goldenrod 6 look forward to working with the city to find an amicable resolution to this matter,” Resk wrote on the Goldenrod 6 facebook page after the council meeting on Tuesday.

Resk and his chickens live on the ocean side of the pedestrian bridge that crosses Bayview Drive. He encourages others to stop by, say hi and pet the chickens.

Resk, who has had the chickens for almost a year and a half, says they’re quiet, clean and add character to the community.

“People really enjoy them… (People) come to see them and pet them (every day)… They have a nice big yard to roam around, they’re healthy and I keep it clean,” Resk said last month. “They add more to the neighborhood than detract from it.”

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