In order to comply with recent legislation (Indiana Code 34-28-7), the Clay County Commissioners suspended the rules to approve an ordinance to amend the Personnel Policies Handbook on the first reading during Tuesday's meeting.
The ordinance amends two sections in the handbook pertaining to the rights of employees -- who are appropriately licensed -- to bring firearms and ammunition onto county property "as long as the firearm and ammunition are locked in a glove box or trunk or stored out of plain sight in the employee's personal locked vehicle."
However, an employee choosing to do this must also fill out a County Firearm Notification Form and submit it to the Auditor's Office prior to bringing the firearm onto county property.
In addition, other than law enforcement officers, employees of the Clay County Jail and other county facilities listed in IC 34-28-7-2(a)(2) are excluded from these rights and are not permitted to have firearms or ammunition in their personal vehicle while on county property.
While employees may have the firearm or ammunition locked in their personal vehicle, the ordinance also states, "illegal firearms, weapons, and other dangerous or hazardous devices or substances are strictly prohibited from the premises of the county without proper authorization" as specified in the "Security of Premises" section of the handbook.
Per county policy, the amendment also had to be approved by the Clay County Council, which was passed unanimously during its meeting Tuesday evening.
Meanwhile, Clay County Emergency Management Director Bryan Husband brought a couple items for the Commissioners' consideration.
Husband presented a District Mutual Aid Agreement which lays out guidelines on recovering costs from natural disasters, along with protocols pertaining to district assets and assistance, such as HazMat units.
The commissioners approved authorization for Commissioners' President Charlie Brown to sign the agreement.
They also approved a $4,000 Indiana Department of Homeland Security Foundation Grant, which Husband said would be used to purchase non-budgeted items for the office.
He added the grant funding would be specifically for a complete computer workstation, a digital camera, GPS system, printer and a pager to allow dispatchers to contact him.
The next meeting of the Clay County Commissioners will be 9 a.m., Monday Oct. 4, in the Commissioners' Courtroom of the Clay County Courthouse.