WEST POINT – The West Point City Council has been discussing an animal ordinance since August.
A special meeting of the West Point City Council was held on Oct. 20 to discuss the matter further.
City Administrator Randy Welding said the ordinance previously introduced in October has to be voted down at the November meeting of the city council and the ordinance would return for a third first reading.
“It got very, very confusing,” Welding said.
The ordinance first presented in August was tabled at that time to go back for some revisions.
The discussion then included a proposal for an annual $5 dog license fee. Another concern was the ordinance could potentially affect 4-H or FFA members’ animal projects.
In September, the animal nuisance ordinance was returned to the city council for another first reading, with some revisions. That version was approved.
Revisions included descriptions of nuisance and circumstances an animal would be prohibited, including animals being kept in such a number or manner that accumulated waste would become a detriment to animal health or an annoyance to humans.
Another addition stated it would be a prohibited act to allow animals ot make noise for prolonged periods in such a way it would unreasonably disturb public peace and quiet, and prohibited an animal damaging or defiling public or private property.
Owning livestock, in the September version, would be illegal, with allowances for 4-H or FFA projects, which would need approval from the council.
In October, instead of returning with the same version of the ordinance for a second reading, further revisions were presented to the council. It further specified what animals were viewed as livestock, and allowed for only hens to be allowed within city limits in a confined area; no roosters.
A penalty of $25 for violators of the “animals running at large” section of the ordinance was added in, as well as specifying the unlawfulness of owning vicious or dangerous animals.
A permitting process was outlined for people wishing to have an animal to compete in a competition (such as 4-H and FFA) was described in the ordinance as well. The $5 pet fee was also removed.
The first reading of that version was also approved.
In December, Welding said the city council will be presented with another version of the ordinance for a reading. It takes three readings of an ordinance (or the waiving of a third reading) to be made law.
At the regular October meeting of the city council, local landowners expressed concerns over the close proximity of the Navigator Heartland Greenway CO2 pipeline, as well as concerns over safety.
Welding said Navigator representatives attended the Oct. 20 meeting to explain to the council their side of the story.
“The council had never heard from their side and it wasn’t fair for them just to hear from the two farmers that were there that really had a lot of misinformation,” Welding said. “So they gave their side. They kind of showed us where it’s going to route and what safety aspects they have in place.”
Also at the special meeting, the council was informed that Merschman Seed plans to add on to their facilities in the future.
The next regular meeting of the West Point City Council will be Nov. 14.