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City plans animal, traffic public hearings

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The Roswell City Council plans on having two public hearings in January, including one about a proposed revision of the city code pertaining to animals and animal control services. (Alex Ross Photo)

A revision of the city’s animal codes and adoption of New Mexico Uniform Traffic Codes could be considered at the January meeting of the Roswell City Council.

The councilors voted unanimously, 10-0, during their Thursday night meeting to advertise for holding public hearings at the Jan. 9 meeting.

Thursday’s meeting also included the passage of three new ordinances, as previously reported, and the approval of a consent agenda with nine items on it.

The rewrite of Chapter 4 of the city code, which pertains to animals and fowls within the city limits and establishes the city’s animal services, has been in progress for five months by members of the Public Safety Committee and city staff, who have spent 8.5 hours on discussions and revisions, Deputy City Manager Mike Mathews told councilors.

“This updates and reorganizes Chapter 4 and provides clarity and improves the implementation,” Mathews said.

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He added that fees related to the regulations will be submitted separately to the council in January in the form of a resolution.

The New Mexico Uniform Traffic Code, which would become the city’s Uniform Traffic Ordinance if adopted, is promulgated by the New Mexico Municipal League, City Attorney Aaron Holloman said.

“In large part, it follows the state statutes for any changes in the traffic code,” he said. “Once we have adopted a Uniform Traffic Ordinance, we then have the ability to cite into municipal court for traffic violations.”

Holloman said efforts to coordinate with the police department and municipal court have indicated to city staff that the current code needed some changes. The proposed code, he said, will make some revisions. One requires City Council’s annual consideration to adopt the new codes, rather than an automatic adoption, so that city staff, police and municipal court have the opportunity to coordinate for future changes. Another change clarifies which version of the Uniform Traffic Ordinance is in force. In this case, the 2018 changes are being considered for adoption.

According to Holloman, the changes to the traffic codes can be viewed at the City Clerk’s Office.

With approval of the agenda, items on the consent agenda also passed without discussion.

Three lease renewals or revisions were included, one involving a Roswell Air Center tenant, one involving the Museum Archives Building of the Historical Society for Southeast New Mexico and another involving farm land that has been leased by a local family for several years.

The consent agenda also included the November City Council meeting minutes and five resolutions, including one requiring the owners of 10 properties to clean up weeds or debris or face possible liens if city crews do the work.

Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 311, or at reporter02@rdrnews.com.