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K-9 Jax reports for duty

Jax at Wednesday's meeting of the Fairbury City Council / EOCI photo.

Fairbury’s new K-9 officially began his duties Wednesday night after a formal swearing-in and badge presentation before the Fairbury City Council.

Jax appeared with his handler, Officer Cody Followell, and Chief Mark Travis. Thanks to the residents of Fairbury and surrounding communities, plenty of money was raised for a K-9 program. The council gave Travis the go-ahead to start a program in March. Jax arrived in Chicago the following month before attending a 12-week academy with Followell.

“(Jax) seems to be very well acclimated to his home and the people around him,” Travis said. “He has already made an impact and we hope many, many more throughout the years.”

According to Travis, Jax got his first drug arrest in Fairbury two weeks ago – right after becoming state certified. The Fairbury Police Department has been in contact with Jax’s previous owner, a police officer in Belgium who has shared puppy photos and other information. The man is getting married next year and even plans to visit Fairbury.

Also at Wednesday’s Fairbury City Council meeting, Street Superintendent Martin Steidinger discussed the need for a new recycling trailer since the current one has a broken spring and rusted axle.

“We don’t need two axles, we just need a single,” Steidinger explained. “The length is going to be the big thing.”

City Superintendent Brett Ashburn was absent from the meeting but left some information for Mayor David Slagel to relay to the group. He noted health insurance rates were once again lowered by Blue Cross Blue Shield, water plant clarifier maintenance went well and the city has received the new trash cans which were recently ordered.

Alderman Gary Norris reminded council members of the Marsh Park reopening dedication on Saturday, July 28. The celebration will include music from the Prairie Central High School band, the John Ward and Mark Steffen gospel groups and Twin Cities Brass Quintet. Vendors will sell food items and there will be displays of small engines, wooden toys, antique tractors and vintage cars. The day starts at 11 a.m.

In other business, the council:

-Granted a request for Duane Ifft to attend the IPWOSA Conference in September.

-Purchased a cash drawer for the reception counter.

-Authorized the closing of streets for the local taste event Aug. 4.

-Approved an application from Gig’s Place Bar and Grill for alcohol sales and consumption on city property Saturday, July 20 from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. during a street dance.

-Approved the annual appropriation bill or ordinance.

-Appointed Lynn Dameron mayor pro-tem from July 20-27 while Mayor Slagel is on vacation.

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