GARLAND — Town leaders are considering adopting the Sampson County Animal Ordinance, giving their seal of approval for the animal control rules and scheduling a public hearing on the matter.
Sgt. Jessica Kittrell of the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office made a presentation to the Sampson County Board of Commissioners regarding animal issues in the area.
“A lot of times it’s the same folks,” she said. “We do have stray animal calls. Fortunately most of the times when we pick up strays here. They’re mostly reclaimed.”
She reported that several situations occurred with repeat offenders in Garland and not having “enough teeth in the ordinance in place.”
“Quickly looking over it, it still gives the authority to the police department and not the sheriff’s office,” Kittrell said in regards to the outdated policy and the town being without a police department for several years.
Garland commissioners are in the process of building a police department. They are currently looking for a chief to operate it. But in the meantime, Kittrell made a suggestion to utilize the services of the sheriff’s office.
“It wouldn’t be an issue if you had an officer,” she said. “But it would be much easier if it was updated or if you possibly adopt the Sampson County Animal Ordinance to run along with what we already do.”
There are several civil penalties that could bring the town of Garland some finances as a result of the animal control issues. According to the county’s published ordinance, the fee is $50 for the first offense, $100 for the second and $200 for the third. Each additional offense is $200.
When asked if other towns took the ordinance into consideration, Kittrell said Roseboro and Clinton have sturdy policies.
“As far as the repercussions of violating it, it has a lot more teeth than Garland as well as Turkey,” she said.
Following the presentation, the commission made an unanimous decision to adopt the 40-page ordinance, pending a review from Town Attorney Michael Porter and a public hearing at the next meeting.
“I read over this and I really like it myself,” said Commissioner Ralph Smith. “I think the town should adopt it personally.”
Garland getting FEMA funds
Following the devastation of Hurricane Matthew, town officials are looking forward to receiving money for repairs.
During a Tuesday meeting for the Garland Board of Commissioners, Town Clerk/Finance Officer Pamela Cashwell reported that more than $15,600 is expected from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
“They were really helpful to us,” Cashwell said about the town dealing with obstacles.
In emergency operations dealing with water and sewer, Cashwell reported that more than $5,700 is expected. For buildings, parks and recreations got more than $6,170 and for roads it was $3,724.
“This point it’s going through the channels and hopefully our checks will be coming,” Cashwell said.
Some of the mentioned work involved tree removals and repairs to ball fields.
Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook