- Associated Press - Friday, October 2, 2015

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - An Omaha woman whose backyard chickens ruffled her neighbors’ feathers has reached a settlement that will allow her to keep her domesticated fowl.

The Omaha World-Herald (http://bit.ly/1Vs6nvj ) reports that Stacy Williams had been sued by a neighboring couple in July after she expanded her backyard garden from a small plot to a 2,000-square-foot area. The chickens stay in a coop.

Under terms of the settlement, Williams will pay for a privacy fence between her yard and the yard of neighbors Brad and Lynn Perry. And Williams will remove the compost piles currently in her backyard.

The original lawsuit targeted Williams over her urban garden, compost piles and a downspout. It also took aim at the chickens, citing covenants in the Trendwood subdivision that prohibited the raising of poultry.

A judge previously ruled in the Perrys’ favor. Advised and aided by her attorney, Williams was able to gather and notarize 42 signatures — representing over half of Trendwood’s residents — to abolish the over 40-year-old covenants.

Rather than press the issue, Williams said she wanted to settle so “everyone can move on.”

The Perrys’ attorney, Eric Kruger said the settlement should resolve the issue, provided that Williams follows through.

“I think we’ve arrived at an amicable solution,” he said.

Williams says taking care of the chickens has helped her 17-year-old son with anxiety and depression.

One of the two neighbors who showed up in court to support Williams, Tammy West, says she is in the beginning stages of raising her own chickens.

Speaking about the case, Williams says, “a lot of good has come out of it. I just wish it hadn’t been such a waste of time and energy.”

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Information from: Omaha World-Herald, http://www.omaha.com

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