June 10, 2015 Edition

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Lawrence Co. may consider
countywide animal control

Megan Heyl
Staff Writer

A countywide animal control effort was discussed at Monday night's Lawrence County Quorum Court meeting. Walnut Ridge Mayor Charles Snapp said the city council recently approved the purchase of the former Animal Gateway Clinic to be used as an animal control facility.

Snapp said the facility has the ability to be utilized by all of Lawrence County should a plan be put into place. "I'm not offering a Walnut Ridge run control facility for the county," he said.

A proposed countywide effort, which would split expenses between Walnut Ridge, the county and other cities, has yet to be developed. Snapp said he has spoken with several Lawrence County mayors who have interest in the program.

Justices agreed that the stray dog and cat population needs to be addressed and they are prepared to support a countywide effort and write an ordinance to set new regulations should an agreement be reached.

Snapp said he isn't sure on how to approach a countywide program and that he is open to any and all suggestions on how to make it work. "I don't have the answer, and I don't have a plan," he said.

In other business, Justice Junior Briner requested the formation of a volunteer committee to review and address budget concerns regarding the Sheriff's Office.

County Judge Dale Freeman said the budget needs to be handled quickly and he will be an active participant in the committee meetings. "If the county goes broke, I'm responsible for it," Freeman said.

Freeman said in the past there has been enough in his budget to help with deficits but he doesn't have it this year. "We can't wait till November on this," he said regarding the budget. Briner agreed and said he plans to have the committee formed and a meeting set up for next week. He said he will report the committee's findings at the next quorum court meeting.

Also at the meeting, Freeman said the lease agreement on three Mack trucks is ending, and he is working on continuing the lease agreement used before to get three new trucks for three years. He also is working on a lease agreement for four road graders.

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