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THE COUNTY OF DICKINSON HEREBY AMENDS ORDINANCE NO. 99-1 AS FOLLOWS: Ordinance No. 99-1, dated May 27, 1999 shall be deleted in its entirety and in place thereof insert the following amended language. This amended Ordinance is hereby added to the Dickinson County Ordinance, and shall read as follows:
Section 1.1 Purpose
Statistical analysis reveals a direct correlation between truancy and criminal behavior. Lack of a high school education and criminal behavior causes sociological problems in the family and in the community. As a result, persons committing criminal acts place a greater hardship on Dickinson County citizens and impacts on the stream of commerce.
Enforcement under the State's compulsory education laws does not adequately address truancy abatement. Moreover, the only remedy is the mandatory jailing of the parent who fails to comply. An ordinance would give law enforcement an option of bringing the parent or other necessity of an arrest warrant or mandatory jail.
Section 2.1 Definitions:
(a). A truant is any pupil subject to compulsory full-time attendance, who during any semester has unexcused absences from school 5 times. This may include all or any portion of a school day.
(b). A habitual truant is any pupil who has been reported truant to the Attendance Officer of the Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School District under sub-section a 2.1 (a) and then receives 1 more unexcused absence in same school year.
(c). Appearance ticket means a complaint or written notice issued by a police officer, directing a designated person to appear in the 95B-District court at a designated future time in connection with his/her alleged commission of a designated violation or violations of State Law or Local Ordinance for which, the maximum permissible penalty does not exceed a fine of $500.00. The appearance ticket shall be numbered and shall comply with state law.
(d). Sufficient and proper excuse for school absence shall be determined by the local school district.
Section 2.2 Procedure:
(a). Each truant shall by reported to the Attendance Officer of the Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School by the local school district.
(b). The Attendance Officer of the Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School District, upon receiving a truancy referral from the local school district, shall make a conscientious effort to hold at least one conference with a parent or guardian of the pupil and the pupil him/herself, pursuant to the notice required under section 2.2 (d). If the persons subject to this notice fail to appear at said conference, the matters shall be referred to the Dickinson County Sheriff's Department Truant Officer for investigation.
(c). All habitual truants shall be reported to the Dickinson County Sheriff's Department Truant Office.800-1500 hours) shall be questioned and transported to the school from which the minor is absent without excuses. The school, in its discretion any may take any actions it deems appropriate. If the minor is found to have been adjudicated a truant, the minor shall also be brought before the probation officer of the court having jurisdiction over minors.
(d). A juvenile (6 to 16 years old) found away from his/her home during school hours (0800-1500 hours) shall be questioned and transported to the school from which the minor is absent without excuse. The school, in its discretion may take any actions it deems appropriate. If the minor is found to have been adjudicated a truant, the minor shall also be brought before the probation officer of the court having jurisdiction over minors.
(e). The Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School District shall adopt a uniform procedure to notify the parent, guardian or other person having control or charge of the minor in writing by registered mail or personal service that his/her child is not in regular classroom attendance without valid excuse, or is failing in schoolwork as a result of being truant. The Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School District Attendance Office shall notify the Dickinson County Sheriff's Department Truant Office if the minor's attendance record does not improve or the referral to them is unsuccessful for any reason. The Dickinson County Sheriff's Truant Officer shall make a complaint against the parent, or other person in parental relation having the legal control or charge of the minor who fails to comply with the Dickinson-Iron Intermediate School Districts procedures.
Section 3.1 Enforcement:
(a). A Dickinson County Sheriff's Department Truant Officer shall have the powers of a deputy sheriff within the County of Dickinson while performing official duties under this ordinance.
(b). No minor shall be detained in any jail, lockup, juvenile hall, or other secure facility who is taken into custody solely upon the ground that he/she is truant, or adjudged to be such or made a ward of the juvenile court solely upon the ground of truancy.
(c). It shall be a violation of this ordinance for a parent, legal guardian, or other person having control over a minor to aid and/or abet a truant or habitual truant by assisting, allowing, aiding or jurisdiction of any Court for a violation of this ordinance or state truancy statutes. Adults may not harbor minors who skip school. Parents are allowed to use reasonable means to discipline minors consistent with the state child protection laws.
(d). It shall be a violation of this ordinance for a minor subject to compulsory school attendance laws to be absent for school without sufficient and proper excuse as determined by the school district.
Section 4.1 Penalties:
(a). On a first offense the District Court may fine the parent, guardian or other person having control over the minor not less than $100.00 nor more than $500.00, and/or require that person to attend parental responsibility classes, counseling or community service as approved by the courts. In addition, the Court may require the parent, guardian or other person having control over the minor to observe a curfew or attend regular school sessions with the minor and by the primary enforcer of truancy rules and regulations of the school district which the minor attends; order the parent to seek appropriate governmental authorities or private agencies assistance in handling or controlling the minor.
(b). On a second offense the District Court may fine the parent, guardian or other person having control over the minor not less than $250.00 nor more than $500.00, and/or any other condition described in 4.1 (a).
(c). On a third offense or subsequent offense, or for an offense involving a minor declared an habitual truant, the District Court may fine the parent, guardian, or other person having control over the minor a fine of not less than $500.00, and/or any other condition described in 4.1 (a).
Section 5.1 Validity and Publication:
(a). The phrases, sentences, sections and provisions of this Chapter are severable and the finding that any portions hereof is unconstitutional or otherwise unenforceable shall not detract from or affect the enforceability of the remainder of this ordinance.
(b). This amended ordinance shall be published in full in the Daily News, a newspaper of general circulation in the County of Dickinson qualified under State law to publish legal notices, within 10 days after its adoption. This ordinance shall be recorded in the Ordinance Book and such recording shall be authenticated by the signatures of the Chairperson of County Board of Commissioners and the County Clerk.
(c). This Ordinance is declared to be effective immediately upon publication.
Adopted and signed this 22nd day of May, 2000.
Dickinson County Board of Commissioners
Dolly Cook, County Clerk