Ingham County Board of Commissioners vote on final resolutions of 2017

MASON, MI (WLNS) – The Ingham County Board of Commissioners met for its last meeting of the year Tuesday night and a lot of ground was covered during the meeting.

We’re going to highlight some of the issues we’ve been keeping a close eye on for you, starting first with an item that affects the Ingham County Sheriff’s Office.

The Board of Commissioners approved a resolution that will restore two corrections officers’ positions at the Ingham County Jail.

The 2018 budget had originally called for the elimination of three corrections officers from the facility in Mason, but the sheriff asked for a couple of those positions back.

The Finance Committee said it would restore the positions if voters approved a tax increase in November. Since the voters said “yes,” the county now has the money to fund two positions, so they will be restored.

Keeping with topics related to law enforcement, the board also approved a resolution Tuesday night, that supports legislation to raise the age for juvenile offenders in Michigan.

Our state is one of five around the country that automatically allows 17 year-olds to be tried and sentenced as adults.

The group “Raise the Age” in Michigan is working to showcase some of the pitfalls of the system and are calling on lawmakers to make major changes to how our state charges juveniles.

The bill, which is sitting in the state senate, would raise the age of legal adulthood in the court system and treat 17 year-olds as minors.

6 News talked with Derrell Slaughter, vice chair of the Lansing area ACLU, after the meeting to get his reaction on the board supporting this legislation.

“I’m really excited,” he said. “I think this really sends a signal to the legislature that counties do value raising the age.”

There’s also an update on the dog-fighting ring in the Greater Lansing area.

Commissioners accepted a $5,000 grant from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, known as the ASPCA, which will reimburse Ingham County Animal Control for expenses related to the care of dogs seized as part of a dog-fighting ring investigation.

More than 50 dogs were taken in as evidence earlier in the year; some had to be put down, others were sent to a rehabilitation facility.

“Besides giving us this money, they’ve given us a lot of logistical support, equipment support so ya know the ASPCA and the Humane Society of the United States and some of the other large organizations have been helpful as well as the citizens,” Dinon said. “It’s been a tough year but we’re getting through it and the support of the community and these other animal welfare organizations is a big help.”

6 News also learned that the shelter gained ownership of 15 more dogs, which were among those that were seized earlier this year. 11 of them were sent to the Detroit-based non-profit Bark Nation to help rehab the dogs. Four more were euthanized and there are 14 left that still have to be dealt with at a later time.

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