South Jacksonville Exploring Solar, Nuisance Animal Ordinances

By Benjamin Cox on February 14, 2022 at 11:44am

The Village of South Jacksonville has two new ordinances they are working on for passage in the near future.

The first ordinance that will be discussed in the upcoming Committee of the Whole this Thursday night is an ordinance governing solar energy.

Village President Dick Samples says that they need to get something on the books: “The solar ordinance is something that came upon us very, very quickly. It’s brand new. It’s a matter of what are [people and other cities] doing, what they are not doing, and the way things are going up.”

The ordinance would govern any incoming solar energy installations either commercial or residential. It will dictate the height and appearance of any ground mount or roof top installations.

The second major ordinance the village is looking into is the governing of animals. Samples says that a variety of animals have been an issue in the village for a long time: “It’s been a problem forever and a day – chickens, and cats, and turkeys – all kinds of animals. If you want animals, then, go live in the country. Don’t subject your neighbor to these kind of conditions and all that, because they didn’t move into town or want to live in town next to this kind of stuff.”

The ordinance defines what a Nuisance animal is and the penalty for said animals causing problems. Any citation for a nuisance animal has a fine set at $100 and may have the animal impounded at Morgan County Animal Control.

Samples has also made recommendations as well as Code Enforcement Officer David Bobb on upping building permit costs in the village. Samples said during the Village’s Board meeting last Thursday that the increase is to bring the village in line with surrounding towns of similar size.

All three issues will be discussed in full during the upcoming Village Board’s committee of the whole meeting on Thursday. If a consensus is reached, the new ordinances would likely fall on the March action items agenda.