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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Proposed ordinance tabled, workshop scheduled

Thursday, August 9, 2012

The animal ordinance, which the Brazil City Council has been working on for quite some time, was brought in front of the council for a second reading Wednesday.

After the amount of time the city has been working on the proposed ordinance -- No. 10-2012 -- having no definitive decision may seem like a step sideways or even backwards.

However, there may be a positive aspect -- the city is receiving, albeit late, public input.

Councilman Brad Deal stressed how important public input was for city government.

"We've been working on this animal ordinance for four years," Deal said. "We have had meeting after meeting ... talking about the animal ordinance. Until we came to a decision, no one cared. The minute we came to a decision, everybody cared.

"I'm sorry, but my deal with that is, for four years, I've been sitting here discussing this animal ordinance, for four years we've been making proposals, for four years we've asked for input, and we've received nothing until it comes out in the paper that we're about to make a decision. My question would have to be, 'Where's everybody been?'"

However at this meeting, things were different, as many citizens came out to voice their concerns and offer ideas.

One main area of concern regarding the proposed ordinance for citizens, who were in attendance, was the reasoning for the yearly fees of $5 for altered and $50 for unaltered animals.

Deal explained the reasoning, saying there needs to be a way to identify animals and the proposed way to do that is to have pet owners register their pets and get a new tag each year.

As for the fees, the $5 altered animal fee is simply to help cover the cost of tags, and the $50 fee can be looked at as an incentive for people to spay and neuter their pets, which should help cut down on the amount of strays.

Resident and Park Board Member Linda Messmer asked about the possibility of using the revenue generated from the tag fees and fines to pay for an animal control officer, but noted $5 fees aren't going to generate enough money to fully fund a salary.

Councilman Sam Glover said the council didn't think the fees would fully fund an animal control officer's salary, but rather help offset the cost and that the money needs to be found and budgeted for.

"I think that we need to have an animal control officer in place when this ordinance goes into effect, and I think it needs to be budgeted into next year's budget," Glover said. "That money that we get from these fees will help with that -- it's not going to pay for it."

Councilman Dustin Jorgensen said he is confident the money for the officer can be found and budgeted for 2013, citing several cuts the city has made recently.

He also added it might be in the city's best interest to get the animal ordinance officer to first enforce the existing ordinance.

"We need to hire an animal control officer now, to see if what we have now does need adjusting ... you have to look at things, you have to revise," Jorgensen said. "We have no idea if what we're doing is working. We know it's not working because we have no enforcement."

Jorgensen said the officer could also be consulted and help with the process of creating the best ordinance possible.

Brazil Mayor Brian Wyndham agreed with Jorgensen saying the cost savings did happen, but it was important to keep in mind that some expenses have gone up as well.

"When we do get into the budget, we'll have to look at the increases too," Wyndham said. "I don't think anybody will disagree that we do need an animal control officer in order to (enforce the ordinance)."

The council agreed that the best course of action -- especially with budget meetings coming in the near future -- was to make a motion to table the ordinance for a workshop, scheduled for Aug. 27, immediately following a 7 p.m., special meeting in City Hall.

Councilman Tyler Hutcheson made the motion to table the ordinance, which was seconded by Glover, and it passed unanimously.

In other city council news:

* Before the Aug. 27, animal ordinance workshop, the council will conduct a special meeting where it will be presented with the first draft of proposed utility rate increases, which the council said are needed to fund certain projects, and

* Sam Crawn, owner of Sam's Do It Best Hardware, Brazil, was on hand to voice his concern that he feels Wyndham is misusing tax dollars. Crawn states Wyndham has specifically told city workers to not shop at his store due to a disagreement between Crawn and the mayor's brother. Crawn provided monetary figures he calculated to gauge the amount of money he feels the mayor is costing the city -- due in large part to trips the city makes to Terre Haute. Wyndham thanked Crawn for his comments and said he didn't want to speak for his brother because he was not in attendance. He added all he would address was that he was skeptical of the legitimacy of the figures, because "he's assuming (the city) is making trips to Terre Haute that (the city) is not."

The Brazil City Council meets regularly the second Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m., in Brazil City Hall.

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No where in the Mayors' remarks to Mr. Crawn did he deny specifically telling city employees to not shop at Crawn's store.

-- Posted by My Dime on Thu, Aug 9, 2012, at 6:51 PM

bet your a&&* ill be at the next meeting telling brazil hell no i will not pay an fee for having pets and ill tell you why.one,theyre going to increase the water bill again?home owners are being penalized for paying for an never ending sewer problem thats been going on for decades.when does it end?ill tell you.never.two,as a home owner i have the right to freedom of choice,and to charge me a fee for my right to choose to have pets is violating this home owners rights,its called right to privacy,what goes on in my home is NO BODIES BUSINESS but mine.and one other thing,why not charge all the fire arm owners a registration fee for all their firer arms,a fee for all golf carts,fee on all these unsafe scooters around town,my property is on s.forest ave,clearly marked BEWARE OF DOG and NO TRESSPASSING.to put it in terms one can understand,i reserve the right to freedom of choich,and if i choose to not answer my door as i do on a regular basis as people who do know me will call and let me know theyre coming over,its my choice to do so,same as reserve the right to choose to not answer my phone.i dont recognise the number,not gonna answer it.my late dad was vet srvc offc for years and he said never let anyone tread on your rights,so many men fought and died so i would have the freedoms to choose.its my choice, well with in the legal guide lines,tax some other thing.

-- Posted by unclegrabby on Thu, Aug 9, 2012, at 8:33 PM

unclegrabby, this oridance is not a violation of your rights, it is a way of trying to get the unwanted pet population under some kind of control. Just go to the Clay County Humane Society sometime and see all the unwanted dogs and cats they have down there, because the owner didn't want to spend the money to have them spayed/neutered.

-- Posted by bandmom_63 on Thu, Aug 9, 2012, at 10:16 PM

to bandmom.you have chosen to use your right to freedom of speech.as i also have the right to do so,i own numerous k9s,both indoor and out,all of which are not allowed to roam free in town,always restrained,i first hand know what it feels like to be unwanted,yes,i have apathy for the ones in the shelter,my question is,ever been the subject of a attempted home invasion?happens more then we hear about or that is reported.what i choose to do here is my business and nobody elses,i dont put the public in danger with mine,i salute you for your utilizing your freedom of choice,the freedom of speech.

-- Posted by unclegrabby on Thu, Aug 9, 2012, at 11:03 PM

Unclegrabby, I understand your position and concerns. Responsible pet owners do not allow their pets to cause problems. It is the ones that do not care that do, but it is the responsible ones that the city wants to pay to support the means of enforcing the animal control ordinance. We have an animal control ordinance on the books already, however it is largely unenforced and the fines are set at a level that it is not cost-effective to collect unless the violator pays them voluntarily. There was mentioned that every pet owners is supposed to pay an already existing fee, but in researching the city ordinances on-line I have yet to find the one that sets that fee. (If anyone knows, I'd appreciate the reference.)

In his motion to table the ordinance, Tyler boiled down what should happen. Compromise will mean that no one will be completely happy with the outcome and no one will be completely dis-satisfied, but everyone should be able to live with it.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Fri, Aug 10, 2012, at 11:35 AM

On the alleged boycott of Sam'a Hardware by the city, if it is a fact, someone has forgotten that there is no place in government spending for personal vendettas or family feuds, it is about getting the TAXPAYER the highest value at the LOWEST COST. This can be fairly easily proven, one way or the other, mathematically by looking at the city's purchases and comparing them to the prices at the store along with other known or estimable data. In the determining formula, one must consider not only the cost of the item and its value, but the time an employee must spend to procure it and any other additional costs such as the time it will take an employee to drive additional mileage, the cost of fuel, the loss of the employee's time and the vehicle for other tasks, and wear and tear on the vehicle, etc.

Basically, if it is more cost effective to do so...Government should buy FROM THE DEVIL HIMSELF!

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Fri, Aug 10, 2012, at 12:19 PM

In regards to Councilman Deal's comments regarding the importance of public input- if public input was so important, why did the council attempt to pass the animal control ordinance on first reading last month, especially needing to suspend the rules of the council to do so. That in itself was an attempt to shield public input on the evening of the vote. Without Jorgensen's "no" vote to suspend the rules of the council this ordinance would already be law. The Times did a good job following this proposal a month ago and citizens responded...unfortunately not to Councilman Deal's liking.

-- Posted by GOPman on Fri, Aug 10, 2012, at 1:14 PM

to the city council;

all this talk about animal control! it is very clear that the old dogs in this fight have been looking out for themselves and their cronnies for years. it is very clear that the young pups in this fight are looking out for the people of this community. it's time for the old dogs to lay down; and the pups to run the dog pen.

as to the hiring of an animal control officer; i volunteer to take the position as animal control officer at no charge. i will have no problem with controlling the animals running loose and out of control in OUR city. there are proper ways to handle these dogs and this situation.

51-50! somebody call the po po! this stuff is crazy!

-- Posted by madmarkbedwell on Fri, Aug 10, 2012, at 2:54 PM

You're d*mn right there's a way to handle these dogs and the situation .. ENFORCE THE FRIGGING LAWS instead of just creating them and having no accountability to the irresponsible pet owners!

Geebus .. the council needs to grow a pair .. or borrow a pair. Get the job done, for crying out loud.

You go, Mark! They won't take a volunteer. They'd rather try to PAY someone by sticking it to the responsible pet owners.

Oh, and to Mr. Deal regarding no comments until an ordinance is passed .. you received responses BEFORE the ordinance passed .. you just received MORE NEGATIVITY after it did.

-- Posted by Emmes on Tue, Aug 14, 2012, at 11:47 AM

The clay county shelter doesn't have or take cats at this time.

-- Posted by trappedagain on Thu, Aug 16, 2012, at 6:14 PM

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