Chelsea passes amended animal control ordinance

Published 9:23 pm Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Chelsea 6U Bombsquad baseball team was recognized at a Chelsea City Council meeting July 12. (Reporter Photo/Emily Sparacino)

The Chelsea 6U Bombsquad baseball team was recognized at a Chelsea City Council meeting July 12. (Reporter Photo/Emily Sparacino)


CHELSEA – Changes to the city of Chelsea’s animal control ordinance, including the addition of an animal control officer and the establishment of a shelter or pound, will take effect in five days, city leaders decided at a July 12 meeting.

The Chelsea City Council unanimously approved the ordinance after complaints surfaced of residents tethering their dog outside “in the full sun” for an extended period of time without shelter from the elements, councilwoman Juanita Champion said. Although the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office was notified, the agency could not remedy the situation given the parameters of the previous animal control ordinance.

“We’re hoping this (ordinance) can now give us some teeth,” Champion said, noting the contract says SCSO deputies will familiarize themselves with the amended ordinance, which will give them the authority to issue citations to violators of the ordinance.

“We need the ordinance enforced,” Champion said. “We need to settle.”

The amended ordinance establishes the office of animal control officer, defines the officer’s duties, establishes a place of impoundment for dogs in violation of the ordinance, prohibits dogs running at large, controls barking and mischievous dogs and prohibits animal cruelty.

Councilwoman Alison Nichols read parts of the ordinance aloud during the meeting, noting the city’s focus on the sixth and seventh sections addressing cruelty to animals and tethering of animals, respectively.

“We wanted to bring out these two because we recently had an issue in Chelsea,” Nichols said, referring to the same issue Champion talked about in pre-council. “We wanted to make those points of the ordinance very plain.”

A resident voiced concerns about ongoing animal control issues in Chelsea and asked the council if the amended ordinance will allow the city to hire somebody to enforce the rules.

Champion said “yes,” adding the SCSO will enforce it. Councilman Dale Neuendorf expressed support for getting another code of compliance officer as soon as possible, along with instituting a municipal court.

“Without a municipal court to enforce these ordinances, they’re worthless,” SCSO Lt. Cody Sumners said.

In other business, the council:

•Recognized the Chelsea 6U Bombsquad All-Star Team, which finished second in the Shelby County Invitational, second in the Leeds Invitational, first in the district tournament, first in the area tournament and fourth in the state tournament.

The team’s overall record was 23-6. Coaches are Jeremy McCormick, Jonathan Gill, Jason Rhoads, Lance Lee, Matt Manning and Brady McCormick (equipment manager). Players are Jackson Gill, Trey Wimbley, Andrew McCormick, Alex Teter, Grayson Rhoads, Evan Schweikher, Noah Lee, Adrien Shankles, Charlie Larkin, Michael Manning and Jaxon Britt.

•Approved a resolution to appoint the 2016 Municipal Election Poll Workers.

•Approved a resolution to accept a $43,000 bid for the Chelsea Sports Complex maintenance building.

•Approved a resolution in support of law enforcement officers.

•Approved multiple de-annexation and annexation ordinances.

•Approved for the city’s bills to be paid.