Monday, December 12, 2011

nuisance redefined

Montana Code: 
27-30-101. Definition of nuisance. (1) Anything which is injurious to health, indecent or offensive to the senses, or an obstruction to the free use of property, so as to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property, or which unlawfully obstructs the free passage or use, in the customary manner, of any navigable lake, river, bay, stream, canal, or basin or any public park, square, street, or highway is a nuisance. 

Forsyth city ordinance:
7-3-6: Public Nuisance Animals:
A. A public nuisance animal is any animal that unreasonably annoys humans, endangers the life of health of other animals or persons, or substantially interferes with the rights of citizens, other than their owners, to the enjoyment of life or property. A public nuisance animal shall include, but not be limited to, any animal that:
1. Is repeatedly found at large;
2. Damages the property of persons other than its owner;
3. Repeatedly molests or intimidates pedestrians or passersby;
4. Repeatedly chases vehicles;
5. Repeatedly barks, howls, whines, or growls such that it disturbs the quiet enjoyment of the neighborhood as documented by persons living or working in the immediate vicinity of the dog:
a. For a period of more than ten (10) minutes between the hours of ten o’clock (10:00) P.M. and seven o’clock (7:00) A.M.;
b. For a period of more than twenty (20) minutes between the hours of 7 o’clock (7:00) A.M. and ten o’clock (10:00) P.M.
c. It shall be an absolute defense to such violation if the owner or other person maintaining or harboring the dog proves by a preponderance of the evidence that the primary reason the dog was barking, howling, whining, or growling was that the dog was being provoked by a person or was otherwise being incited, or was acting as a guide dog, hearing dog, service dog, work dog, or guard dog:
6. Causes fowling of the air by odor and thereby creates unreasonable annoyance or discomfort to neighbors or others in close proximity to the premises where the animal is kept or harbored;
7. Attacks other animals or is found to otherwise be a menace to the public health, welfare, or safety.
B. It shall be unlawful for any person to have in his/her possession, ownership, maintenance or control, a public nuisance animal.
C. Whenever a person has been found guilty of a violation of this section, he/she shall be found guilty of a misdemeanor, and the court may:
1. Impose a fine of not less than twenty five dollars ($25.00) or more than five hundred dollars ($500.00), and may be confined in the county jail for a period of not more than six (6) months.
2. Require payment of all impoundment fees and all reasonable costs incurred in providing necessary veterinary attention and treatment for the subject animal and any and all other reasonable costs incurred as a result of the violation.
3. Depending upon the severity of the offense, order that the animal be seized and destroyed.


The author of the Forsyth dog ordinance, Rebecca Convery, justified the new dog ordinance at the city council meeting this way; “after doing some research, I’ve determined the new dog ordinance to be very fair.”  Ms Convery, who also serves as the Prairie County county attorney, presumably researched other city codes before arriving at this opinion, because Prairie County doesn’t have a dog ordinance.  So my question to Ms Convery is;  why are Prairie County residents being treated so UNFAIRLY?  Perhaps Ms Convery should put her own doghouse in order……… before offering opinions!  

I also find it very odd that the presumptive combined intelligence of the Doofusville Five can’t/won’t accept Montana’s definition of a nuisance, nor will Ms Convery.

Terry ordinance:
8.04.070 Nuisance Animals.  
It is hereby declared a public nuisance for any dog or other animal to destroy property or other pets; to bite or chase after persons not trespassing on the property of, or injuring or attempting to injure the person, family or property of the owner; to chase vehicles in public streets or ways; or by prolonged howling, yelping, barking or by any other means, cause annoyance or disturbance to any person.  Any such nuisance animal may be taken up and impounded by the Poundmaster, Dogcatcher, or any other Law Enforcement Officer.  It is unlawful for any person to own, harbor, keep or maintain any such nuisance animal and it shall be the duty of the Poundmaster, Dogcatcher, and any other Law Enforcement Officer to issue tickets and file complaint for all such violations occurring in their presence.  Any person aggrieved by a nuisance animal may file a complaint in the Police Court charging the owner with the violation of this section, where the offense is not committed in the presence of the Poundmaster, Dogcatcher, or any other Law Enforcement Officer.  Upon a third conviction under this section, the nuisance animal shall be seized and taken up by the Poundmaster, Dogcatcher, or any other Law Enforcement Officer and put to death forthwith.

Are readers aware Ms Convery also serves as the Terry city attorney?  Again, so why are Terry residents being treated so UNFAIRLY?   

Prairie County county attorney; Becky Convery (D)  (49) votes out of (538) ballots..
Sounds like another underwhelming mandate for apathy!

Of course, Ms Convery’s dog expertise and inconsistency is now moot water under the bridge.  I trust the Doofusville Five won’t have any problem filling her boots.….. and any replacement’s job performance will be thoroughly vetted;  “Can you keep a doofus out of jail and avoid lawsuits?  Oh, good!  You’re hired.” 

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