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Ivanhoe Council considers City Marshall position

by Emily Waldrep

Ivanhoe City Council held its regular monthly council meeting on Thursday, February 14 at 7 p.m and discussed shutting off the electric service at the animal shelter, future control of the animal control program, and the city marshal position.

"I had talked with C.D. [Woodrome] about the security light at the animal shelter and the cost that we really don't need since the animal shelter is locked up at the present time," said board member Joe McIntyre. "Although the security light may be beneficial in some ways, the security light did absolutely nothing to keep all of the violators from coming onto the property and destroying the property. We had many reports of vandalism on the property, even with the security light working exceptionally well, so I really don't think we need a security light there."

The animal shelter has been shut down for several months, and the building is currently vacant.

"This is a cost saving approach," McIntyre said.

After a motion and a second from the board, Joe McIntyre and Tommy Morris voted for turning off the electric service but Tom Welch, David Baier and Mark Elliot voted to leave the light up and running, so the motion did not pass.

In addition to discussing the electricity at the animal shelter, the board discussed who would cover animal control while the program is being revamped.

"I think we need to make certain that the citizens know that if they have a real serious animal situation, they need to contact the Sheriff's office," McIntyre said.

Although the animal control program is no longer in place, the city of Ivanhoe will still have to abide by the city ordinance that does not allow certain livestock and a large number of pets within the city limits of Ivanhoe.

Next, the council discussed the city marshal position and whether the city will need to continue researching the position or go in another direction with the program.

"I believe after last months meeting, there needs to be some clarification on this position," said Tommy Morris. "The money is there for the marshal, as we have budgeted for 44 hours per week for security. That is 20 hours for our deputy and 24 hours for the county. There is no prohibition against having two hats, since we have already had a deputy that is a policeman in another city. I believe one of the things that we can do is having a deputy that is also a city marshal, and split the time 20/20 and we would still have leftover funds. We have a facility that is being used by the sheriff's deputies at this point, but it belongs to IPIOA, so we could use that. There is money budgeted for the personnel, the facility and the car."

Ivanhoe's officer, Deputy David Davis also spoke on the subject and assured the board that splitting the position is a very real possibility.

"A couple of years ago, the state legislature allowed a law enforcement officer to work for two separate entities," Davis said. "So, to answer the question the best I understand it, you may hold dual commissions according to state law. It may be founded on Ivanhoe being able to establish a commissioning body, which the city would be with the proper paperwork through the state. It would not be a large ordeal for an officer to work for two separate departments. This has become very widely accepted throughout the state."

Board members will continue to research the position and will update during upcoming board meetings.

In other orders of business, Larry Vaugn and Patsy Sterlise were voted to hold full term positions in the planning and zoning committee.

The next regular meeting will be held on March 14 at 7 p.m at the community center. Meetings are open to the public.