Commissioners Discuss Concerns over Dogs at Large Policy 


The Darke County Board of Commissioners met on Thursday afternoon to discuss fund advancements and concerns about taking care of dogs at large. 

Commissioners Matt Aultman, Marshall Combs, and Larry Holmes were present.

The board approved Resolution (R-364-2023). This resolution is three transfers of appropriations. The first is for the Darke County Engineer; this transfers $10,000 to replenish the fuel oil line. The second is for the Darke County Animal Shelter; this transfers $900 to cover the cost of printing and mailing 7,000 dog license applications. The last is for various departments and transfers $1,455 to cover vacation payouts. 

The board also approved Resolution (R-365-2023). This is a fund advance of $550 to cover Loudy’s bill for copies. This will be advanced back into the general fund once the revenue is received from the 2021 Chip CDBG Grant. 

During Public Comment, Mark Ater, Director of Public Safety with Union City, needed clarification on the responsibility of dogs running at large after having an incident where the dog warden couldn’t make it out to a call to pick up a dog for an hour and a half.

“After reviewing the recording of the conversation that Captain Turner had with the dog warden, he informed Captain Turner that we are paid by taxpayers, he is not, so he doesn’t have to respond to the calls we are asking him to come to,” Ater said. “So I guess I need some clarification because if that is the case, then we need to figure out something in Union City to address the issues that we have.” 

Commissioner Matt Aultman responded to Ater, stating that the dog warden is correct; he is not funded by taxpayer dollars and does not get any county money to operate. 

“I know he is working on an after-hours call policy,” Commissioner Aultman said. “I think he had that in place at one time; it was set up with the police chiefs, and that had been working for a long time. I know he is working on updating that, but I’m not sure where he is at with that because he had some personnel changes out there. He has been pressed on staff and personnel.” 

The Commissioners agreed that while they don’t have an answer right now, it is a work in progress. They are hoping for a policy to be put into place in the near future. 

“It’s not an answer, I know; I can’t give you one now,” Commissioner Aultman said. “But we are promptly working on an answer for you because everyone is going to have to have that answer.”

The Darke County Board of Commissioners holds a regular session every Tuesday and Thursday at 1:30 pm at 520 South Broadway, Greenville, Ohio 45331. For more information, contact the commissioners’ office at 937-547-7370