The Macomb Township Board of Trustees approved a new animal control ordinance that falls in line with Macomb County’s regulations and allows the county animal control officers to enforce the ordinance locally.

The Macomb Township Board of Trustees approved a new animal control ordinance that falls in line with Macomb County’s regulations and allows the county animal control officers to enforce the ordinance locally.

File photo


Board adopts new animal control ordinance

By: Joshua Gordon | Macomb Township Chronicle | Published July 30, 2018

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — The Macomb Township Board of Trustees has approved the adoption of an animal control ordinance that puts the township more in line with the Macomb County regulations and gives the county the ability to enforce the township ordinance.

Township Planner Patrick Meagher brought the ordinance to the attention of the board during a recent board meeting. Meagher said the township received a letter from Macomb County Animal Control Chief Officer Jeff Randazzo that an updated ordinance or amendment must be made in order for the Animal Control Department to enforce regulations in the township.

Meagher told the board that Randazzo provided a sample ordinance and that the board could adopt the ordinance or make an amendment to the current regulations. However, Meagher said with Randazzo being an expert in the animal control department, he suggested adopting the provided ordinance and making amendments later if needed.

The board unanimously approved the provided ordinance.

“Not being a real animal expert, I would leave it to the experts, and I think Chief Randazzo put together a pretty thorough ordinance,” Meagher said. “I suggest we adopt it and if we find problems with it we can always amend it.”

The main updates to the new ordinance deal with animal neglect, cruelty and care, as well as dangerous animals. In the ordinance, it requires pet owners to properly feed, house and exercise their animals.

The ordinance also lays out how animals should not be abused or subjected to cruel acts from the owner. If the owner is found to be in violation, the owner can face up to 90 days in jail or a fine of up to $200.

“In many cases, many ordinances do not address animal neglect, cruelty or care,” Meagher said. “The county is asking for them to be able to enforce our ordinance, but also to make sure we include criteria for cruelty, neglect and those type of things.”

Meagher said the ordinance is also important because local district courts will not allow the Macomb County Animal Control Department to submit a citation to the court if the permission is not granted in the local ordinance.

Trustee Tim Bussineau said he was weary of the county requiring the board to adopt an ordinance, but understands after Meagher’s explanation that the county needs the permission for the enforcement and was only providing a sample ordinance.

“This will help them enforce it in court if they have to go to court,” Bussineau said. “It makes a lot more sense.”

The Shelby Township Board of Trustees approved similar changes to its animal control ordinance in early June, but went even further and included language on how many animals a household can have, as well as more in-depth definitions on dangerous animals.