County adopts animal ordinance

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 22, 2010

NATCHEZ — The Adams County Board of Supervisors voted Monday to adopt an ordinance that will give the Adams County Sheriff’s Office the legal teeth to respond to calls about vicious dogs.

“Basically, (the ordinance) helps the residents out there in terms of dogs being vicious or a nuisance,” President Darryl Grennell said. “It gives the sheriff’s office some power in order to deal with dog issues as they arise outside the city limits.”

Per the ordinance, the Natchez-Adams County Humane Society will be the organization that actually picks up the animal, while the sheriff’s office will serve as the accompanying enforcement body, Grennell said.

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“The humane society is going to work in conjunction with the sheriff’s office to have the power to capture those animals and take them to the humane society,” he said.

In other news, the board voted to proceed with application to a state grant program that would give the county approximately $37,000 annually to upgrade emergency health care services.

To do so, the county would have to invest $0.15 per person in the county, which would total approximately $5,000, Grennell said.

The program has been in existence for 10 years, but the county has not utilized the funds, said Tim Houghton with American Medical Response, who approached the board about participating in the grant program.

Previously, the legislation creating the grant program required that participating counties designate a lead health care agency, but that has recently changed, Houghton said.

“The county has attempted to tap into these funds in previous years, but was unsuccessful because we have multiple lead agencies in the area,” Grennell said.

The money the grant generates can be used to purchase equipment that can transmit information from an emergency response directly to a hospital’s computers, e-mails and even to a doctor’s smart phone while the ambulance is still en route, Houghton said.

“If it is cardiac related, the cardiologist is looking at it and is making a professional decision,” he said.

“Minutes equal heart muscle.”

The grant would cover the cost of equipment for both ambulance services and hospitals in the county, and any equipment purchased through the grant belongs to the county.

“If the EMS provider leaves the county, that property becomes the property of the county and can be used by the next EMS provider,” Houghton said.

EMS vehicles currently have similar capabilities via fax, but Houghton said it is only effective approximately 50 percent of the time.