Blue Springs discusses possible gun, dog codes

Two ordinances – a gun and a dog ordinance – were discussed in detail at Tuesday night’s Blue Springs Board of Aldermen meeting.
Blue Springs Police Officer Anthony Anderson brought an example of a gun ordinance for the aldermen members to review and possibly adopt for the town of Blue Springs.
The ordinance is as follows:
Section 19-3: discharge of firearms and similar weapons
“The firing, shooting or discharge of any firearm as defined in section 19-4 (a) (1) of the Code of Ordinances or of any pellet gun or BB gun is prohibited within the city limits; provided, however, that this section shall not apply to any law enforcement officer in the lawful exercise duty within the course and scope of employment nor shall it apply to government owned and operated firing ranges. The prohibitions contained in this section shall apply to the shooting or discharge of paint-ball guns, except where the projectile is fired and strikes on private property by permission of the landowner for sports-related activities where participants are wearing protective face masks. The use of starter’s pistols for bona fide sporting events, which do not emit projectiles, are not prohibited.”
Blue Springs Attorney Chandler Rogers said, “The problem I forsee is hunting in town, but you could make it where the hunters would need to come to the town hall to get a permit for hunting.”
Anderson said, “I think having a gun ordinance in town is one of the most important things a town can have. Right now I can’t do anything when shots are fired because there isn’t a gun ordinance in place. Everyone has their constitutional right, but this ordinance should be geared towards the unnecessary firing of weapons. If Blue Springs has an ordinance, then if there’s something I need to check on, I can come on that property and ask him or her to prove why shots were fired.”
Alderwoman Shirley Allen suggested to look further into the specifics of the ordinance and decide as a group what would be best for the residents of Blue Springs before final adoption of the gun ordinance.
Alderwoman Leanna Hollis agreed and said that she would like a description of Section 19 in detail that could be added to the ordinance if needed.
The idea of having a gun ordinance in place came up into discussion a few months back when some of the aldermen members expressed their concern and sometimes fear when they hear gunshots being fired.
Aldermen members reviewed the Union County Animal Control Ordinance and agreed with a majority of the ordinance, so the town of Blue Springs is entering an interlocal agreement with Union County in case any concerns come up with animals, especially dogs, in Blue Springs. The main concerns in the ordinance were what the definitions of a vicious dog are and what the fines would be for people breaking the rules set forth in the ordinance. More details will be discussed at the next meeting as to if any wording will be changed in the ordinance to make it better suited to fit Blue Springs. The ordinance has passed.
In other news, aldermen members are going to get prices on adding flowerpots on front of the town hall near the storm shelters for beautification purposes.
In addition, aldermen members are also going to price new metal coverings to place on top of the pergola at the town hall. When it rains, the water doesn’t run off properly, so a new metal covering will make the water run off properly and will fix other issues that are being caused by the current covering on the pergola.
The aldermen also decided to become members of the Union County Development Association.
Mayor Rita Gentry, Alderwoman Shirley Allen, and possibly more are going to represent the town of Blue Springs at the annual Mississippi Municipal League conference held in Biloxi in June.
The public hearing about the gun ordinance will be held at 6 p.m. on June 5, 2014 at Blue Springs Town Hall. The public is invited to attend and ask questions or voice concerns. The regularly scheduled monthly town hall meeting will be held following the public hearing.