City Council voted Tuesday evening to adopt changes to the City Code that provide for additional restrictions on tethering pets and steeper penalties for pet-owners.
The restrictions include a prohibition on tethering pets outside in temperatures greater than 85 degrees and for female pets that are in heat. It also restricts the amount of time for a companion animal to be tethered outside from four hours in a 24-hour period to two hours in a 24-hour period.
Any person violating the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor. Any person who subsequently violates the provisions of this section for the same animal shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor and the animal shall be seized.
The changes are effective immediately.
In addition to adopting the changes in the City Code regarding pets, City Council voted to:
- Endorse four transportation projects for state funding. The projects are a connector road for the Berry Hill Industrial Park, a roundabout on Mount Cross Road at the entrance to the Averett University sports complex, a third westbound lane on South Boston Road from Kentuck Road to Airport Drive, and pedestrian access improvements on Piedmont Drive.
- Authorize a bond issue for capital improvement projects, with $4 million for electrical substation and line rebuilds and $3.4 million for general government projects.
- Approve a moral obligation to back a five-year loan renewal with the Virginia Small Business Financing Authority for debt service on the purchase and up-fit of a shell building in the Cane Creek Industrial Park. The building, located at 500 Cane Creek Parkway, was first used by GOK International, but now will be used by Unison.
- Amend the city manager’s contract to provide for an increase in salary and benefits.
- Set the compensation of the city attorney.
- Appoint/reappoint City Council members to various boards and commissions. Sherman Saunders was reappointed to the Danville Development Council and the Employee Retirement System Board of Trustees. Dr. Gary Miller was reappointed to the Roanoke River Basin Association board. Madison Whittle was appointed to the West Piedmont Planning District Commission. James Buckner was reappointed to the Dan River Business Development Center board.
- Amend the budget to provide for federal and state money for a regional bus service.
- Amend the budget to provide for a federal grant to pay for the set-up of an office, salary and benefits for a gang prevention coordinator position.
- Cancel the regular business meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 7, and instead meet on Thursday, Aug. 9. The change in dates will allow City Council members to attend National Night Out activities on Aug. 7.
In addition to these votes, City Council held a first reading on a budget amendment to provide for a state grant for airport maintenance.
A first reading is an introductory step required by City code before certain matters can be voted upon by City Council. This step serves to provide public notice of pending action. Council cannot vote on this matter Tuesday. The earliest vote that can take place will be the Aug. 9 City Council meeting.
Also in the business session, City Council recognized the graduates of the inaugural Danville Police Youth Academy. Forty youths – ranging in age from 10 to 16 – graduated last week from this one-of-a-kind academy. The three-week academy not only gave the youths something to do for the summer, but also provided an opportunity to build bridges between police officers and youths through positive engagement.
City Council also heard from Robert David, the City’s first youth and gang violence prevention coordinator. He assumed his duties in Danville on June 11.
Prior to coming to Danville, he was a juvenile court counselor in Rockingham, N.C. He also serves as a life and recovery coach and motivational speaker and has been a drug-free Mr. Universe body builder and four-time world champion power lifter.