CHARLESTON - KENCO Enterprises of Cape Girardeau will replace the narrow strip of grass between the Mississippi County Courthouse's front sidewalk and curb while Commissioners again received confirmation that no matter what decision they make, they are very unlikely to please everyone.
Commissioners accepted KENCO's low bid of $5,845 during their regular weekly meeting held Wednesday due to Thanksgiving falling on their regular Thursday meeting day.
The cost for the "turnkey project" includes the stone and installation in a herringbone pattern for the 660 square feet area, according to County Clerk Junior DeLay.
A bid from Bizzell Lawn Care and Nursery Co. for $8,514 was also received.
Bids came back somewhat higher than DeLay expected, but commissioners agreed the pavestones would enhance the courthouse's appearance.
Shortly afterward during a discussion on animal control, a letter from a rural Bertrand resident was opened and reviewed which advised Commissioners they should drop the pavestone project and use the money to add a person at the sheriff's department and to train and equip them with tranquilizer guns.
Prosecuting Attorney Jennifer Raffety confirmed there is no state leash law in a written opinion reviewed by commissioners.
Raffety advised there are provisions for animal neglect and abandonment, but it must be established that substantial harm was done to the animal or the animal must be found far from its home.
Another provision in the state statutes provides for impoundment by law enforcement for animals left unattended and off the owner's property, with specific time frames outlined for notification of the owner and how long the animal must be boarded before being put down.
"I think they already use this to some extent," DeLay said. "I think mainly if the dog bites someone."
Presiding Commissioner Jim Blumenberg said that he was not so much for a leash law, but is just looking for a way to deal with nuisance or vicious dogs running loose in populated unincorporated areas of the county.
"When you just sit and watch your dog harass people, you have a problem," Blumenberg said.
He said he wants to give owners a chance and advise them their dog is creating problems before asking the sheriff's department to pick the animal up. "If they don't put them up, we'll put them up," Blumenberg said.
Blumenberg said he would like to see action taken only in cases in which there is a complaint so they don't get situations in which "Fido gets out and next thing the sheriff gets him."
In other county business Wednesday:
* The county will buy back from the insurance company the county's 1996 dumptruck which overturned recently.
"The truck's totaled out," Blumenberg said. The insurance company will pay the county $19,780. "We can buy it back for 10 percent of that," he said.
Commissioner Homer Oliver said the insurance company probably totaled it out on the presumption that the truck's frame was twisted. Commissioners discussed having the frame straightened.
Blumenberg said the accident happened when the truck's brakes failed as it approached a "T" intersection while loaded down with snowstone gravel.
The driver was wearing his seatbelt and was uninjured. "He just rode it out," Blumenberg said.
* Commissioners agreed to take down an overgrown fence between the county airport and an adjacent farm so the landowner can put in center pivot irrigation, but only if the landowner is willing to pay half.
"We can take care of our problem with our mowers," Blumenberg said.