April 22, 2009 Edition

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Concerns shared at Hoxie

Leslie L. Ginn
Staff Writer

The Hoxie City Council listened to concerned citizens on a variety of topics at its meeting on April 14.

Hoxie business owner Sonny Anglin requested access be made available through Elm Street located on the south side of Hoxie. There is a sewer lift station that blocks part of the road and debris piled up by a business further reduces access.

Responsibility for the street was discussed. A decision was made to find out whether the city is already legally accountable for the street, or if not, if the city wants to assume the task of upkeep. It was decided to investigate the matter and make a decision at the next council meeting.

Wilma Rogers, a Hoxie resident, requested a reimbursement of $1,000, which she said was the difference between what she paid for a container and what she had to sell it for when the city required her to dispose of it in 2005.

Rogers added that the ordinance cited dealt with trailers. "I had a container because it never had an axle," Rogers said. "I felt like I was made an example of for those who owned containers that the city wanted removed."

In further discussion it was noted that owners of 14 containers were each given a ticket. Each case was individually tried according to the specifics of that case. In Rogers' situation, the judge ruled that the container was to be removed because of the word "trailer" printed on the container, in accordance with the ordinance for the removal of unsightly trailers. A total of 11 trailers were to be moved according to rulings by the judge. The container situation took more than two years to resolve.

Council Member Sherry Moore said, "I want to apologize that this situation has caused bad feelings."

Kenneth Quarry said, "The court has let three containers stay. That shouldn't have happened."

Hoxie resident Dale Johnson inquired why the new dog ordinance has such a high fine. The first offense has a fine of $100 to $250, and the second up to $1,000 according to Johnson.

"It is outrageous," said Johnson, who paid a total of $1,000 in fines for the three tickets he received for his dogs.

Police Chief Glen Smith explained that Johnson was assigned the minimum of the fines by the police officer, but the judge made the decision to charge the maximum amount because the dogs had caused repeated problems.

In addition, it was noted that many of the dogs causing problems are presently tied up on chains. Chains are not allowed as the only means of impediment in the new dog ordinance. Dogs are to be kept in adequate fences or inside the home. Citizens are to be notified that as of May 16, citations will be written for dog owners who use only chains to secure their pets.

The water/sewer committee suggested that, to avoid a buildup of compensation time, an employee be reassigned to work through the weekend and have two days off during the week. This suggestion was accepted. Overtime pay will be reimbursed if necessary. Those in the water/sewer department were advised to use up all present compensation time by Dec. 1.

In other business:

  • it was announced that May 11-22 are the dates for the spring cleanup of non-household waste, except brush. Larger items may be placed by the roadside during these days only.

  • June 27 was declared as "Suitcase Sunday" for Hoxie residents. Suitcase Sunday will benefit ShayLee Lawhon's project, Suitcases for Kids, which collects new or gently used luggage that can be given to displaced children to use for their belongings. Lawhon will be distributing more information.

  • the deposit for rental of the Hoxie Service Center was increased from $25 to $100. The deposit will be returned in full to renters if there is no damage.

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