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Chickens and Eminent Domain Properties on Agenda for City Commission

Jan 27, 2013 -- 4:06pm


By: Laura-Jane Hatcher (WRGA News)
Two issues that have been simmering since 2012 are coming to a head Monday night at the Rome City Commission.  
First up on the agenda for the 6pm meeting is a third and potentially final public hearing about keeping chickens in Rome city limits. The issue first graced commissioners’ desks back in August, after Chris and Erin Lewis applied for a special use permit to keep their pet hens in their Fair Oaks Subdivision property. Though that permit has not been thrown out, the city will instead hear from citizens on whether or not to adopt revisions in the ULDC that all potential urban poultry owners would have to follow. Such amendments could include henhouse placement requirements and chicken sanitation conditions. 
Despite a six-month-long wait for any firm resolution, Chris Lewis has not lost respect for the wheels of Government.    
“It makes me glad to see that we have procedures in place that can effect change in places that are needed,” he said after the December 17th meeting after his permit was sent back to the planning commission, for a second time. “I’m glad that the city commission is willing to look at an issue that keeps coming up and potentially put some regulations in place that help everybody-- those who want chickens, and those who don’t.” 
The revisions come from the planning commission with, surprisingly, no recommendation, as council members there were locked in a 5-5 vote.  
Also on the agenda for the meeting are some eminent domain resolutions that could free up the stalled Anna K. Davie School construction site in South Rome. Several properties on Wimpee Street, Pennington Avenue, South Broad and East Main Street are set to be signed off to the City of Rome. A portion of Hull Street running south off Evergreen Street will also be permanently closed for the projected school building.  
Though many loose ends will likely be tied at the meeting, the schools opening date has been pushed back to January 2014. 
The Rome City Commission Meeting will be held on Monday night at 6pm on the second floor of City Hall. 

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