Centerville Council votes to allow school farms; will prosecute utility thefts

Centerville Council votes to allow school farms; will prosecute utility thefts

Telegraph correspondentJuly 2, 2013 

CENTERVILLE -- City Council amended an animal ordinance Tuesday to allow “school farms.”

Though no school within the city limits currently has such a farm or plans to develop a school farm, council members said they wanted to get the ordinance change on the books to open the door for such a possibility.

The amendment came at the request of Councilman Cameron Andrews.

Andrews is an assistant principal at Warner Robins Middle School, where a school farm program is underway.

Council discussed the trend of school farm development to teach students agricultural concepts and the agricultural industry.

Council unanimously passed the measure after discussing various school farms already existing in Houston County and the benefit to students while at the same time having a minimum negative impact on neighborhoods close by.

There are two county public schools in Centerville, Thompson Middle School and Centerville Elementary School.

Also Tuesday, council heard the first reading of an ordinance allowing utility theft cases to be cited in the city and tried in Municipal Court.

City Attorney Rebecca Tydings said previously such cases had been heard in State Court. She said clarification on state laws as to whether or not municipalities could prosecute such cases has been cleared up in favor of municipalities, making the ordinance warranted.

She said there had been two cases of utility theft in Centerville in the past month. The ordinance allows for city prosecution of most utilities in a city, not just utilities owned by that city.

Contact Michael W. Pannell at mwpannell@gmail.com.

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