Chicken lovers rejoicing, lobbying after bill looks to make their livestock legal

Pat Loeb
March 16, 2019 - 4:00 am



PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- Chicken lovers are trying to make the birds legal in Philadelphia, again. A bill now in City Council would amend a 2004 law that banned farm animals from the city.   

Maureen Breen took advantage of the Easter season and its specialty candy when she came to City Hall bearing gifts.

“Peeps with a little "please legalize us" sign,” she explained.

Maureen Breen is on left and Jillian Gonzalez on right
Pat Loeb | KYW Newsradio

Breen is the mother hen of the chicken legalization movement, but she says there is a flock of supporters.

“My estimate is there are 5,000 chickens in the City of Philadelphia,” she said. “People want to have their chickens legally.”

READ: Are eggs good or bad for you? New research rekindles debate

Breen is revving up her effort now that Councilman Bobby Henon has introduced a bill that would exempt hens-- though not roosters-- from the farm animal ban. 

Councilman Brian O'Neill thinks that was a mistake.

“I was told it was inadvertently slipped in to that bill,” he said.

O'Neill is the author of the farm animal ban. He says he's had no complaints about barnyard smells since the ban, so he'll ask that his district be exempted if the bill goes through.