Hillsville Town Council at its July 11 meeting signaled an interest in heading off potientially dangerous incidents between animals and humans during Town events through changes to Town ordinances.
Following a brief discussion of large dogs (and snakes) among participants in the Summer Nights Concert & Classic Car Cruise-Ins, Mayor Gregory Crowder directed Town Manager Retta Jackson to examine current town ordinances and draft changes or amendments to regulate the presence of nuisance animals at the festivals.
According to Jackson, the next step will be to draft a code or ordinance to address these situations, present it to Town Attorney Andrea Tolbert for review and then present the recommendation to Town Council for approval. Jackson said since the proposed changes do not involve zoning or taxes, no public hearing is required. No date was mentioned for the proposal to be presented to Council.
According to the ecode360.com website link on the Town of Hillsville home page, Chapter 42 concerning animals states in 42-3 (dogs running at large) “It shall be unlawful for an owner or custodian of any dog to allow the dog to run at large. A dog shall be deemed to be running at large while roaming, running or self-hunting off the property of its owner or custodian and not under its owner’s or custodian’s immediate control.”
Section 42-5, (keeping animals in such manner as to cause a nuisance) states, “Keeping animals as to cause a nusance No person shall pen up or confine cows, horses, mules or other animals in any place within the town that will cause it to be a nuisance.”
Allowing animals to run at large is addressed in 42-6 with the sentance, “It shall be unlawful for any person to allow any hog, pig, goat, ox, cow, calf, horse, mule, colt or other animal likely to be a nuisance to run at large in the town.”
Crowder told meeting participants the July 9 Summer Nights Concert & Classic Car Cruise-In was the largest crowd the Town had seen for the series, which is a collaboration betwen the Town and the Friends of Hillsville group.
“The only complaints I had were people couldn’t see the stage,” said Crowder. He said organizers were looking at options to open additional space up for the concerts.
Crowder said the most moving part of the concert occured when police officers on duty were asked to come on stage and received more than three minutes of applause from participants.
“The crowd showed it’s not just us (Council) but our community that supports our officers,” Crowder said. He said he felt a lot of incidents could be avoided if people listened to officers’ instructions and local citizens for the most part do the right thing when they are pulled over.
Council agreed with a Planning Commission recomendation to approve a site plan for the construction of a concession stand at the Carroll County High School softball field (100 Cavs Lane). Jackson later said the stand will be an entirely new construction at the field, facing homeplate.
In other action, Pine Creek District Councilman Ed Terry was reappointed vice-mayor and employee service awards were given to Officer James Dalton, Kelly Goad and Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator Tyler Horton for five years of service while Officer Jason Hawks was honored for 15 years of service.
According to the Hillsville Police Department (HPD) Activity Numbers report (from June 23 to July 6), the Department assisted 28 motorists and conducted 22 criminal investigations. The summary reports the HPD conducted 13 accident investigations, 10 follow-up investigations, 424 business checks and 10 house checks. There were 19 calls or unfounded calls with officers issuing 141 traffic summons and giving 47 traffic warnings.
David Broyles may be reached at 276-779-4013 or on [email protected]