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Tethering remains off the table
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Carly Sharec

An anti-tethering ordinance supported by the Dawson County Humane Society is on hold.

County commissioners made no motion to move forward on the ordinance at their meeting on Thursday, Oct. 4. There was no discussion on the matter.

Before calling for a motion, Commission Chairman Mike Berg told commissioners that Carolyn Bowen, president of the local humane society, had provided a recommendation that is a little different from the first recommendation.

Wed obviously like to have a complete ban on tethering, Bowen said at the meeting, but if we need to take baby steps, we will.

Rather than calling for a complete tethering ban, revisions to the proposed ordinance state that:

only one dog may be tethered to a cable run at a time

a tether must be attached to a properly-fitted collar that is not primarily metal, and

the length of the tether from the cable run to the dogs collar should allow access to the maximum available exercise area and allow continuous access to water and shelter.

Berg called for a motion three times, but none was made.

I would suggest, Ms. Bowen, that you get back with Mr. McKee (David McKee, director of the planning and development department), and work through some issues and come up with something to present back to the board, Berg said.

Following the lack of action taken by the board, Bowen agreed that thats exactly what she plans to do.

We are disappointed but not discouraged, and will continue our efforts with the hope that in the future an ordinance will be passed that speaks well of our community and how we treat our animals, she said.

From what I have determined from other counties, it takes time to get an ordinance such as an anti-tether ordinance passed and accepted by the citizens.

Bowen also said that the Humane Society would continue to focus on its educational efforts of Dawson County students on the humane treatment of animals and responsible pet ownership.

Also at the Oct. 4 meeting:

Commissioners voted to not create an excise tax for 2013 to make up for the eliminated funding provided by the energy tax rebate, which is being phased out by the state government. Traditionally, counties and cities have received 3.5 percent of the tax, which has been added to energy-related utilities (i.e. electricity, water, sewer, etc.). As the state phases out the 7 percent tax over the next four years, cities and counties have the option to vote on whether or not to create an excise tax to make up for the funding lost.

Commissioners approved a settlement agreement on the leaking issue of Fire Station No. 2, located on Hwy. 53, between Carter Watkins Associates Inc. and CRS Building Corporation. Water leakage through the roof and walls was reported shortly after the construction of the fire station by the employees. Both CWA and CRS, the architectural firm and the builders, have agreed to pay $10,000 each to Dawson County in a settlement agreement.

The board of commissioners will meet for a work session at 4 p.m. Oct. 11 in the Assembly Room of the Government Center.