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Tasers, taxes and potable water discussed at Drummond Town Council

DRUMMOND - In the daily grind of public meetings, there was nothing on the agenda that was earth-shattering. But the topics discussed June 21 at the Drummond Town Council Meeting were certainly important nonetheless.

Granite County Sherriff Scott Dunkerson notified the council during his floor time that the tasers that the department were using had started failing. He noted that the weapons were approximately 10 years old and severely out of date with current technology. He replaced those weapons at a cost of approximately $10,000, which Dunkerson asked both Drummond and Philipsburg to each fund $1,200 toward cartridges and software downloads for training his staff on the updated equipment.

The potable water that the council discussed in May was again a topic of discussion. The well was drilled the previous week, but Mayor Gail Leeper noted that the town's hydrant system was connected to the water tower in such a way that the hydrants would have to all be turned off for work to begin on bringing water inside the town hall. The council discussed several possible resolutions and will continue to seek more by the July meeting.

Other issues addressed at the meeting included: the renewal of city attorney Jana McGill's contract, a policy to be drawn up for public interaction during council meeting and postings for a number of residents with delinquent taxes.

On the latter issue, the Granite County Treasurer's Office currently shows that the Town of Drummond has more than $49,000 in outstanding taxes owed by its residents. The council discussed a proposal to post the names of these individuals and businesses through local media in mid-January and mid-July, approximately 45 days after the due date for the November and May payments.

During the Public Comment portion of the meeting, citizens Jeff Pollard and Bob Teruel spoke on issues that concerned them. Pollard again addressed the safety of pedestrians on Front Street, citing that there are no crosswalks or lights that allow people walking to cross safely. Front street is under the jurisdiction of the Montana Department of Transportation as it is identified as a state highway and part of I-90.

Teruel used his three minutes of speaking time to address several issues. After acknowledging that he really didn't "... understand how these meetings work ..." he suggested that there be opportunity for Public Comment on issues both before and after the meeting.

"After discussing everything, that the public should be allowed to speak at that time too," said Teruel. "You guys (Council) bring up issues that we want to discuss and we have to put it off another month."

Teruel also briefly spoke on issues of bullying that he claims to have seen in local schools and businesses, space for additional community seating at Town Council meetings and some issues of personal importance.

The council thanked those speaking for their comments and then got down to the business of their meeting.

The next meeting for the Drummond Town Hall Meeting is slated for July 19, 2016 at 7 p.m.

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