Long list of items discussed at St. Ignatius town council
ST. IGNATIUS - A boil order, marijuana ordinance, parked cars, nuisance dogs and next year's preliminary budget were the all topics of conversation at last Tuesday night's St. Ignatius town council meeting.
Earlier in the day, the St. Ignatius boil order was lifted. While still a health advisory, residents are able to use water normally, with the exception of those residents with weakened immune systems who may need to continue with precautions and boil water or drink store-bought products.
"We still will be chlorinating for a period of time and I can't tell you how long that will be," Public Works Director Ray Frey said at the town council meeting. "Hopefully, it will be a short period of time. I‘ve done more samples than you know of. I've done nine of them in the last five days."
While some members of the community were upset about what they perceived as a delay in informing the town to the emergency, others were more understanding and said that the town couldn't have spread the word sooner and did everything they could once they heard that a problem existed.
"It's just something that happened," Frey said. "We had no control over it. We didn't create the monster and as time goes by, it will all be figured out."
Town council member Mack McConnell moved to use the Ronan marijuana-use ordinance as a pattern for St. Ignatius. It states that it is unlawful for any person, including one holding a lawful card, to use marijuana in the city limits. The council will add the town's current moratorium to the bottom of the new draft, keeping that valid.
"They tried to zone it so it couldn't be close to a school," clerk Lee Ann Gottfried said. "The Tribe has outlawed it. The city of Ronan wants to regulate the public use."
In other news, the council is working on ways to deal with the current issues of nuisance dogs, junk cars and trailers being used as living quarters.
"We need to start addressing the ordinances that are not being enforced," council member Mariane Johnson said. "I understand that there are problems with parking in the town's right of way because so many people do it and they don't have any place else to park."
Cars parked two and three deep along the sides of the street often cause bottlenecks and are unlawful, according to city ordinance. "The cars aren't supposed to be there without current licenses," she said. "Temporary camp trailers being used for living quarters and that is also against town ordinances. We just need to get cleaned up."
Chief of Police Shay Clairmont said, "The Tribe does not recognize any ordinances. You're going to run into the same problem as with the dogs. That is all stuff that the Tribal Council will have to look at in their own way and decide if that is something that they want to govern or not."
Council member Ray Jensen added, "About four or five years ago, we towed them, and towed lots of them."
Mack McConnell said, "We can put warnings on the windshield and if they don't move it, then tow it."
The council looked at a proposed budget for the new year, which Gottfried said mirrors what happened last year. They looked at increasing the allotted budget for animal control, however.
"If the revenue from dog tags was increased, that could offset the cost of animal control," Johnson said.
The topic has been on council members' minds for quite some time.
"I was handing out a flyer across the street from the school and one of them chased me all the way down the street, and that's right in front of the school," Jensen said.
During the police department's report, Shay Clairmont, Chief of Police, announced that he will be resigning, but did not give a date as to when. Officer Jim Atkins has resigned and accepted a position with the Polson Police Department, contingent on his resignation from both Mission and Lake County reserve units. The council ratified Jonathan Gilliland, who was sworn in as a reserve officer on July 30.