Community

Dayton, Kentucky city council meets with pit bull supporters

by Jennifer Sierra, video by Jimmy Lee King

You may watch the full council meeting here:

May 2015 Dayton, Kentucky City Council Meeting

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Pastor Tony Hayes of the Bellevue Dayton Christian Church stood up to address council and ask for participation in a “100 men” group to help fight the drug epidemic in our area. The program also asks its members to help others by shoveling snow, getting cars started for their neighbors and mentoring. There will be t-shirts made for the non-denominational group. The pastor said that It is a way for 100 men to come together to help the city. One idea is for a group of these men to wear their shirts, then walk out onto the streets where a drug deal is being made and intimidate the drug dealers by their presence. If anyone is interested in participating, they should contact Pastor Hayes through the church or on Facebook.

Superintendent Jay Brewer got up to speak about what is going on in the Dayton Independent school system. “We are continuing to improve things this spring. We are replacing outside lights on the school buildings with LED lighting. We are collaborating with Crossroads Church to do landscaping this spring. We had a 7% increase in student enrollment over last year.” Brewer went on to say Juniors and seniors in the Dayton Independent School System are being offered the opportunity to earn tuition-free, college credits as part of a program with Gateway Community College. The school system is offering financial and technological literacy for education. “We continue to offer Spanish I and Algebra I in 8th grade. We also offer an ACT boot camp to help kids prepare for they ACT tests. We will send the 8th graders to Washington DC to visit the nation’s capital. The Bellevue Dayton Summit is on Saturday May 9th . All are welcome even if they want to stop by for a short time. “Early childhood is a focus for us. Only 28% of our students are ready for Kindergarten. We are funding an all-day Kindergarten. We have head start on our campus. We are partnering with Children’s Inc.” Brewer explained.

Ordinances were read separating the Civic Club from the Main Street Association. The Civic Club was absorbed by the Main Street Association several years ago when the Civic Club came to the Main Street Association wanting to be absorbed because of lack of volunteerism. The Civic Club will be in charge of city events and decorations around town while the Main Street Association will be in charge of all matters including the before mentioned decorations and events that are held on the Main Street and/or impact the Central Business District.

Police Chief Halfhill asked citizens to get involved and make a call when you hear or see something suspicious. They made an apprehension of a criminal while a crime was taking place because someone called the police to report they heard glass breaking. Chief Halfhill showed up with backup from Bellevue and Fort Thomas and they were able to catch a thief in action.

All city ordinances are now listed on the city’s web site. The pit bull ordinance was mentioned by council member Joe Neary. Joe Neary and some other council members have been contacted about revising the pit bull ordinance that was put into place about 9 years ago. Neary stated that there were things to consider like the safety of police, firemen and postal carriers. “We need to make sure that the ordinance is fair to everyone. I am putting a lot of time into this I know Mr. Baker (referring to council member Ben Baker) is as well.”

A citizen named Lisa, who formed a group called TAIL (Together in Assisting Innocent Lives), stood up to announce that she had a petition signed by 4450 people in support of lifting the pit bull ban in Dayton, Kentucky. 200 signatures are from Dayton residents and 90 from Bellevue. The pit bull ban is also in effect in other cities like Fort Thomas and has created a divide in that city. There have been heated city council meetings there as well as blogs started in favor of lifting the ban in Fort Thomas. What has been a hot topic in Fort Thomas in now becoming a heated debate in Dayton. “I started this petition because the ban is outdated and unproductive.” Lisa wants to get people to realize that pit bulls should be judged on an individual basis not as a general breed. This issue came to light again in Dayton because another citizen (Robert Wade) is losing his dogs due to the ban. “There are other dogs that bite and are not removed from the home. Persecute the owner, not the dog. It is always the owners fault.” Lisa stated.

Robert Wade stood up to speak. “My dogs have never been out. There are dogs running around all over this town.” Wade, a Dayton resident his entire life, stated that he has never even heard about this ban until now. “I have an 8 foot privacy fence with a padlock on the gate. My dogs get all of their shots and they have never bit anybody. My dogs are rescues.”

A lady by the name of Tammy Nolan from Fort Thomas spoke on the pitbull issue as well. She brought her son who was attacked by a golden retriever. She blames the owner for the bite. She found no records with the health department stating there have been any pit bull attacks in Dayton, Kentucky. Mayor Boruske stated that there is an ordinance in Dayton banning the breed and he intended to uphold the ordinance. “We could talk about this all night but there is an ordinance in place,”  Boruske stated. The people from TAIL announced to council that their attorney intends to file a lawsuit against the city because of the ordinance.

Council member Ben Baker announced that on May 18th, citizen Charlie Tharp will be celebrating his 90th birthday. Charlie’s family donated the museum building for the city of Dayton. They passed around birthday cards for people to sign. Charlie Tharp has lived and worked in Dayton his entire life. Baker said that Charlie has never thrown a birthday card away. “Can you imagine that, 90 years of birthday cards?”

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