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Animal control gets new ride

After a lengthy discussion, the Harrison County Council approved nearly $30,000 for a new truck and animal containment box for Harrison County Animal Control Officer Bruce LaHue by a narrow 4-3 vote. Council Chairman Gary Davis, Vice Chairman Phil Smith and Councilman Ralph Sherman voted against the two separate additionals.
One additional, totaling just more than $24,800, was for a 1/2-ton V8 Chevrolet Silverado 4-by-4 extended cab, and the other was about $4,300 for the containment box.
Davis said the Indiana State Police runs its vehicle to 200,000 miles and they probably drive harder than LaHue does as the animal control officer, so he didn’t believe a new vehicle was necessary.
LaHue’s truck has logged about 106,000 miles.
The problem, LaHue said, is if the truck goes down, there’s no animal control service for as long as it takes for the truck to be repaired.
Councilmen Gordon Pendleton and Jim Heitkemper asked about LaHue’s plans for the old truck, which also has a faulty animal containment box.
LaHue said he was not there to argue for a second truck, but he just wanted to replace the one he has. As for the old truck, its fate would be left to the commissioners. However, LaHue previously expressed the desire to use it as a back-up vehicle.
Councilman Richard Gerdon said it makes good sense to have a secondary vehicle.
In other business, the council approved nearly $440,000 for repaving and paving work at Hayswood Nature Reserve west of Corydon. The additional passed with a 6-1 vote, with only Councilman Chris Timberlake against. He said he wanted to table the matter to try to reduce the scope and cost of the project. His earlier motion to table was denied 3-4, with Heitkemper and Smith joining Timberlake.
The project will pave the road leading to the maintenance shed, which, park officials said, is difficult to navigate as it is. It will also repave all existing roadways and add a few parking spaces both on top of the hill and below by the lake. The walking trail, which is four-feet wide, will also be repaved. And a shelterhouse along the maintenance roadway will again be accessible by vehicular traffic after the improvements. Parking spots will be added near it, as well.
Parks director Claudia Howard presented the council with the next park improvement request totaling about $74,000 for Noe’s Rest Park near Elizabeth. It will be voted on at the council’s next meeting, March 28, at 7 p.m. at the Government Center in south Corydon.
The council unanimously approved $130,000 for right-of-way acquisition for the Corydon-New Middletown Road improvement project and $47,500 for new Ortho photography for GIS mapping.