When the Town of Penhold surveyed residents regarding urban chickens in 2021 the overall response was in favour of allowing urban chickens in Penhold. Town Council has been working to develop a program allowing residents to keep urban chickens while ensuring concerns of those opposed to the program are addressed.
We are happy to announce the program has been developed and the Community Standards Bylaw has been amended to allow for urban chickens in Penhold. The intention of the Urban Chicken Program is to support urban chicken keeping in the Town of Penhold as a hobby and non-commercial activity.
Things to Know Before You Apply:
- Step 1: Reviewing Town of Penhold Bylaws
- Step 2: Complete Urban Hen Keeping Course
- Step 3: Alberta’s Premises Identification Program (PID)
- Step 4: Obtaining your Development Permit
- Step 5: Obtaining your Urban Hen Licence
It is in your best interest not to invest in chickens, equipment, etc. until you obtain your permit. An application is not a guarantee you will obtain a permit, it is a request for a permit. The Town of Penhold has the discretion and authority to deny a request for a Permit due to documentation of medical concerns from neighbouring properties and/or any other concerns.
There is a cap of no more than twenty-five (25) urban hen sites within the Town of Penhold:
Residential areas permissible to house urban hens include R1, R2, and R4 zoning.
Once the applicant has paid for the urban hen licence fee, a certificate will be given to the applicant and they can begin to enjoy being an urban hen keeper.
Step 1: Reviewing Town of Penhold Bylaws:
- It is important to understand the commitment and responsibilities required to become a successful and safe urban chicken keeper. These documents will ensure applicants understand the expectations that the Town of Penhold has for urban chicken keepers.
Step 2: Urban Chicken Keeping Course:
- Complete any one of the below urban chicken keeping courses:
- Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC), Backyard Chicken and Small Flock Care Workshop or email AFAC for further information
- River City Chickens (or University of Alberta Botanic Garden), Chickens 101
- This is important as it allows applicants to learn and understand how to properly provide and care for their urban chicken.
- The certificate or documentation obtained from the completed course is required to be presented throughout the application process. Without which the applicant will not be approved for a permit.
Step 3: Alberta’s Premises Identification Program (PID)
- Register with Alberta’s Premises Identification Program (PID).
- As part of the Animal Health Act, owners of hens must register with the Animal Premise Identification Program and obtain a premise identification number for the urban chickens.
- This requirement is a part of a traceability system designed to address potential threats of disease outbreaks that could affect animal health, public health, and food safety.
Step 4: Obtaining your Development Permit:
- An electrical permit may be required for the construction of your chicken coop. Under the Alberta Safety Codes Act and Permit Regulations, and to ensure proper set up of your urban chicken coop and safety of urban chickens, an Electrical Permit is required to install, alter, or add to an electrical system.
- This applies to the installation of a heat lamp, light fixture, or any other type of electrical components in an urban chicken coop.
- If an applicant plans to install electrical fixtures in the coop, please apply for an electrical permit through IJD Inspections Ltd.
- Applicants will be required to submit the following:
- Site plan showing the dimension of the rear/side yard of the proposed property location and the dimensions of the chicken coop and run (example: Appendix I);
- Certificate obtained from urban chicken keeping course;
- Provincial Premise Identification (PID) number from the Province of Alberta;
- The number of urban chickens (maximum of four (4));
- Owner authorization if property is not owned by applicant;
- Once the application has been received, including the Urban Chicken Neighbour Acknowledgement document (Appendix II), it will be provided to the Business License Officer, as a Request for Decision (RFD), for approval.
Step 5: Obtaining your Urban Hen License:
- Once you have received an approved Permit you are ready to license your Urban Chicken(s) (Appendix III).
- Applicants are required to show their approved Permit to the Town of Penhold before a license will be issued.
- Urban Chicken Keepers are required to pay an annual urban hen license fee of $70.00. This is a flat rate fee regardless of number of urban hens.
- Urban Chicken licenses are valid for the period of January 1 – December 31 of the year in which it has been issued.
- Urban Chicken licenses must be renewed annually prior to February 28th of each subsequent year.
- Urban Chicken license fees will not be reduced, prorated, or refunded no matter the month of purchase.
- Urban Chicken license holders must produce the license upon request of a Peace Officer.
Once the applicant has paid for the Urban Chicken license fee, a certificate will be given to the applicant and they can begin to enjoy being an urban chicken keeper.
Council has passed an updated Community Standards Bylaw to allow for Urban Chickens in Penhold. Click here to read Bylaw 807/2022