Friday, January 21, 2011

Board creates panel

People elect board. Board creates panel. Is this the democratic process of Waxhaw in a nutshell? Maybe, but not in this case.

Per a Charlotte Observer article, the town board created a panel to "to study how best to deal with stray or potentially dangerous dogs." It went on to say:
Commissioners established a group that includes police, a veterinarian, residents and pet advocates, asking the committee to determine what powers the town has to control pet behavior.
I emailed the always helpful town manager Mike McLaurin to get a roster of this panel only to find out that the article is not quite accurate, which shouldn't be particularly shocking for anyone who's been reading post-tragedy articles. Mike said:
The Town did not appoint a committee. I went back and checked the tape. The news media did not report it correctly. Essentially what I requested was that the staff take a comprehensive look at animal control issues and regulations. Staff would consist of the Police, Town Attorney, myself etc. There was a question about consulting with people like a vet. etc. I explained that we would likely consult with outside resources as needed.
The Observer article also contends the following:
Waxhaw had an animal control officer in training before last Wednesday's fatal mauling of 5-year-old kindergarten student Makayla Woodward, and the officer is expected to go on duty within a month or two, town officials say.
In response to a query, Mike stated earlier in the week that he didn't think training of the new animal control officer had begun despite media reports to the contrary.

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