I was pleased to read in the O.C. Register that Santa Ana Council Members Sal Tinajero, Claudia Alvarez and David Benavides voted, as the Public Safety Committee, to change a city ordinance so that residents may keep chickens in their backyard, provided they are at least thirty feet from any neighbor’s property.
Deputy Santa Ana Police Chief Carlos Rojas, who oversees field operations as well as animal control, said his staff looked at a variety of issues, and contacted both Orange County officials and the Centers for Disease Control. Like other city officials, he said he wasn’t sure why the 100-foot standard was adopted, according to the O.C. Register.
Well, the law was ridiculous and it was designed to keep chickens entirely out of our backyards. It was passed years ago when white City Council members regularly used city ordinances to punish Mexican American residents, who often kept chickens in their backyards, having come from rural traditions in their home country. Some of our residents are still clinging to the old racist ideals. Just look at Tim Rush’s comments at this link.
It is ironic then that the chicken law is being changed due to the efforts of a Santa Ana resident named Sharon Portman. Good job Sharon! You have led the charge to change an ordinance that was racist in its original intent.
As you might imagine, the Register’s racist readers have been making their usual stupid comments about the chicken ordinance. But the fact is that the law will still limit residents to having no more than four chickens and I believe that they can only have hens – no loud roosters. That is similar to laws found in other Orange County cities and the Orange County ordinance too.
The entire Santa Ana City Council will vote on this as soon as their next meeting, on May 7. Let’s hope they join the Public Safety Committee in changing a law that never made any sense in the first place.
Click here to learn more about raising chickens in your backyard.