RONDA — The atmosphere was surprisingly subdued at Tuesday night’s city council meeting in Ronda after last week’s work session. Although concerns about the change in animal ordinances were still a concern, there was much more direction.
The ordinance changes will involve three major areas including penalties, public nuisance, and farm animals and fowl.
Council member Reajean Benge was prepared to defend her worry that the language as written was a problem. “How can we represent this town when we don’t know the words? (The ordinance language) needs to be scaled down to our town where they can understand it.” Benge specified several words of concern such as “repealed” and “amortization.”
North Carolina General Assembly Code 160A-174, which gives the town of Ronda the power to make ordinances, and 160A-193, which discusses public health nuisances, has wording that Benge was not sure the other council members were familiar with. In an effort to make certain that the council members all understand their duty to the town, Benge prepared copies of the section of concern and included definitions of unusual words so that members, “don’t just read the words (they) know and skip over the rest.”
Of particular concern to council member Manuel Wood is enforcement. Aware that a dog has been in city hall he seemed disturbed by the idea that the ordinances would not be equally enforced for all citizens of Ronda.
Although the issue was again tabled for discussion after council members had the opportunity to read and understand the proposed changes and their legal duty to the town, Mayor Victor Varela insisted that the decision be made by the end of the year giving “plenty of time to discuss it.”
Beanie Taylor can be reached at 336-258-4058 or on Twitter @TBeanieTaylor.