Supervisors to hold hearing on zoning chickens and prisons

Loyalsock Township supervisors will hold public hearings at 7:15 p.m. today on adopting zoning ordinances relating to keeping chickens and building prisons.

Currently, the township has no ordinance relating to specific animals, besides dogs, in residential zones, and the proposedordinance would regulate who may keep chickens in the township.

“(The ordinance) is going to be read as chickens, because we advertised like that,” said township Manager Bill Burdett. “It will probably be a work in progress. Other things have come up we might consider in the same ordinance. The supervisors will probably want us to add additional things that were not in the current ad. We’ll probably have to table that and go back to the drawing board.”

Some residents have complained of roosters crowing in residential zones early in the morning, which is the motivation for the issue being brought before the board.

After dealing with the chickens, the board willhave a hearing on a zoning ordinance to allow prisons in commercial and industrial areas in the township. Currently, the township does not allow for prisons to be built anywhere within its bounds.

“A prison is not a permitted use in any zone in Loyalsock Township,” Burdett said. “One of our employees went to training with Lycoming County and they pointed out if you don’t permit (prisons) somewhere, the ordinance could be challenged and they could put a prison anywhere.”

The prison zoning ordinance only would allow for a facility to be built as a “conditional use,” Burdett said, and – if the ordinance is approved – a prison would not be considered a “permitted” allowed anywhere in the township.

The township advertised the two ordinances twice in the Sun-Gazette last month, and the supervisors will vote to adopt or reject the measures at their meeting after the hearings.