It looks as if the Auburn City Council has tired of giving the Amish who travel through town anymore chances to clean up after their horses. At a recent council meeting it was decided to bring back to the table an ordinance amendment once discussed to require any horses that travel through the city to have collection devices that will capture droppings, instead of them landing on the streets and parking areas in town.
For years now, at least four, the city has been trying to get the growing Amish community to stop their buggies and shovel up the horse droppings left on the streets of Auburn. There have been many talks, many handshakes, but unfortunately, not many results. According to Auburn Police Chief Ron Mills, there is still horse manure in the streets.
In December of last year the Auburn City Council had a first reading to amend its animal ordinance which drops “collect” from the law, leaving only “capture.” That meant the Amish community, if they wanted to travel through the city, would have to have collection devices (bags) on their horses to do so. Several Amish came to the council meeting where a second reading was to take place and made promises once again to clean up their horse’s act. because of this, the council decided to give them yet another chance of 30 days, which has turned into over three months.
“I have noticed the Amish are riding through town a lot faster to prevent the horse from littering the streets, but it’s not always working, and they are not stopping to pick it up,” said Mills.
Auburn Mayor Mike Hughes believes the city council has been more than fair with the Amish, and have tried to work with the community on the issue.
“I’m getting tired of this,” said Hughes. “The Amish are a valuable part of our community, but they are not the only ones living in it and we have to represent the community as a whole. Most citizens do not want horse droppings in the streets and parking areas,” added Hughes, feeling this struggle has gone on long enough.
Chief Mills is the one who suggested collection devices months ago, however, some of the Amish felt the devices may spook their horses because some are retired from the race industry.
“This is nothing new,” said Mills. “They require collection devises in a great deal of cities in the United States. Horses can be trained to use them.”
The amendment is expected to be discussed at the May 12th city council meeting.