Guest view: Ontario residents face obvious concerns

By DAVE RYNES | Ontario Police Chief

Open letter to the village of Ontario residents: 

There should be no surprise I have returned to the Village of Ontario as your Peace Officer after a decade and a few years of absence. At times, I can’t believe the number of people that stop me on the streets and thank me for returning to the community. 

Now, as spring has come to the upper Kickapoo Valley and the snow is leaving us, I have a few observations to our quaintlittle village. The flood of August 2018 has left a few scars of our community; some will heal, and others may linger for a few years.

These are obvious concerns that I will address in the next few weeks. At this point, I know many have taken ownership. I am asking for everyone’s help in this task. Here are two issues that have come to my attention. 

I encourage every dog owner to get your animals vaccinated and licensed. As the Monroe County Humane Officer, I can go into depth on the importance in vaccinating your dogs. The current Ontario Village Ordinance 117-11 states that it shall be unlawful for any person knowingly to keep or harbor any dog that habitually barks, howls, or yelps or any cat which habitually cries or howls to the great discomfort of the peace and quiet of the neighborhood. Ordinance 117-19 places a limit on the number of dogs that resides in a household. That number is two. 

The second issue I have seen and believe needs to be addressed as the weather changes is the storage of junk and unregistered vehicles. As a very important person in my life said to me the other day, Ontario has the potential to be a very cute little town if people would just clean up their properties.

Village of Ontario Ordinance 273-2 (A): Every owner shall improve and maintain all property under his control to comply with the following minimum requirements. (2) Debris. All exterior property areas shall be properly maintained in a clean and sanitary condition free of debris, rubbish or garbage, physical hazards, rodent harborage and infestation. (8) Junk. All exterior property areas shall be kept free and clear of debris and shall not be used for outdoor storage of materials, to include, but not limited to, metal scraps; lumber; waste matter; litter; abandoned, partially dismantled, non-operable, unlicensed or unregistered, wrecked or junked vehicles; motor vehicle parts; discarded or nonfunctional household appliances; and furniture.

After a conversation with Public Works Director Paul Gibson, we would like to remind everyone that if household items are placed for curbside pickup, they items must be tagged and paid for prior to pick up. Those tags are available at the village clerk’s office, which is located in the fire station.

If anyone has questions on the above matters, I can be reached at (608) 337-4800.

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