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The Local Agenda: Gainesville City Council to discuss dangerous animals

POSTED: February 3, 2014 11:06 p.m.

Gainesville City Council will consider amending an animal control ordinance tonight to clarify what constitutes a “dangerous” or “potentially dangerous” animal. 

The current ordinance classifies as dangerous those animals that attack humans. The amendment will expand that definition to include animals that attack any other animal. 

“We would like to more closely mirror Hall County,” Assistant City Manager Angela Sheppard said during a work session Thursday. 

The city contracts with Hall County for its animal control services, and the amendment is intended to replace an outdated ordinance, Sheppard said, while also acting as a stopgap measure before an overhaul of the city’s entire animal control ordinance can be completed. 

In other business, City Council is expected to authorize two grant applications aimed at economic development and roadside beautification projects. 

The Appalachian Regional Commission grant application seeks 50 percent federal matching funds for the creation of a master plan designed to guide growth and redevelopment in the downtown area. 

The 2014 Georgia Department of Transportation Gateway Grant application is focused on securing funds for landscaping improvements along roadways throughout Gainesville. City staff has identified a project area along Interstate 985 at Exit 20. No matching funds are required. 

Gainesville City Council meets at 5:30 p.m. today in the municipal courtroom at the Public Safety Complex, 701 Queen City Parkway. 

Library system board to consider whether to reopen East Hall branch

The debate about whether to reopen the East Hall library branch will get a fresh hearing tonight at the Hall County Library System Board of Trustees meeting. 

System Director Adrian Mixson will propose a budget for the 2015 fiscal year, which he said he hopes will be convincing enough to build support for resurrecting the shuttered branch. 

The branch was closed in 2011, a casualty of budget cuts, and Hall County officials recently proposed turning the library into a health clinic serving county employees. 

But Mixson has been pushing to reopen the branch, even if in a limited capacity. 

The proposed budget calls for about $327,000 in operating expenses, which covers salaries, benefits, supplies and tech services. The budget also requests an additional $21,000 for computer stations, the most heavily used aspect of the branch. 

“The only unknown is the utilities,” Mixson said in an email to The Times. “I am moving staff and their office equipment to the building from Gainesville and then asking each (to) spend some time working the lab. I also anticipate a grant for additional computer equipment next fiscal year, some of which could be used in the computer lab.”

The Board of Trustees will meet at 6 p.m. today at the Gainesville branch, 127 Main St. NW.

Joshua Silavent covers government issues for The Times. Share your thoughts, news tips and questions with him: 

jsilavent@gainesvilletimes.com

facebook.com/joshuasilavent

@joshuasilavent


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