Animal control discussed
A handful of Clay County residents attended the Common Council of the City of Brazil Wednesday to voice concerns regarding animal control.
Several residents recently approached the Clay County Commissioners requesting the installation or enforcement of animal control in the county. On Wednesday, some of those residents presented the council with a copy of a petition they had handed out, saying many county residents had signed.
Local resident LeAnn Rhodes stated she was unaware of how many total signatures the petition received.
Council member Steve Lamb asked if the petition was for the commissioners, what was the council to do, to which Rhodes said she was only asked to bring the petition to the council.
Many of the residents Wednesday asked how they were supposed to approach the Clay County Animal Rescue, if they suspected the rescue was housing their animal. The business provides animal control for the City of Brazil.
It is located on the property of Chrystll and John Owens and there are no trespassing signs located at the facility.
However, John Owens stated if residents are looking for their animals at the rescue, all they would have to do is make an appointment.
Owens said fines would have to be paid first through the city before the appointment was made.
Council President Sam Glover also asked if the businesses' phone number was published, which the Owens said it was not. However, they noted the Brazil City Police Department and officials at City Hall had the number.
Rhodes, however, noted there might be confusion as to what city ordinances referred to as an animal shelter and its operational hours.
Citing state ordinances and ordinance City Ordinance 93.03 (established in 1988), Rhodes said there was "confusion" regarding the city's current animal control contract with the rescue center.
She said the city ordinance stated, "The animal shelter shall be open to inspection at reasonable times for owners to search for and reclaim animals."
She then noted she has been in contact with several people who have had difficulty in the past getting in touch with the owners of the rescue center.
Rhodes also noted the contract the city has with the animal rescue notes it is a shelter.
"I think our problem is in the animal control contract," Lamb said, "where we identified the animal rescue as an animal shelter."
Council member Pat Heffner suggested the council look into amending the contract with the animal rescue.
Brazil Mayor Ann Bradshaw said the wording of the contract with the business would be looked at in the future.
"We're going to address that," she said.
The Clay County Animal Rescue has had an animal contract with The City of Brazil for three years.
Meanwhile, with a unanimous vote, the council passed a Special Floodplain Ordinance's second reading. According to City Attorney Traci Lawson, the ordinance was updated to include new language, in addition to new federal and state statutes.
Lawson has said the ordinance was required so the city could participate in the National Flood Insurance Program and had to be approved before new floodplain maps take effect in September.
The Common Council meets regularly on the second Wednesday of each month in Council Chambers of City Hall. Its next meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 10.