No sooner has the dust settled from the Montgomery County Council's controversial foray into backyard barnyards than the issue is now coming home to roost in Rockville. City Councilmember Julie Palakovich Carr has proposed animal regulations changes that would permit chickens in Rockville backyards, schools and daycare facilities, under various terms and circumstances. No roosters would be permitted. Goats would also be allowed on public property to clear invasive plant species.
Concerns about noise and disease that would affect humans were part of the discussion among County Council members. However, many seemed to avoid the topic of Histoplasmosis in humans, a disease caused by spores of the fungus Histoplasma capsulatum, which can be found in chicken waste. The potential health issue has been raised by critics of backyard chicken coops elsewhere in the country. At the same time, some in Rockville have argued for years that residents should be allowed to raise backyard chickens. Where do you come down on the topic?
You'll have a chance to make your feelings known: Councilmember Palakovich Carr is hosting a meeting on the proposed changes tomorrow, October 21, at City Hall, from 7:30-9:30 PM in the Black Eyed Susan Conference Room.