Ontonagon mulls courthouse security

ONTONAGON – The Ontonagon County Board of Commissioners heard from sheriff Dale Rantala about hiring former special deputy Jeff Rule as courthouse security person.

The Sheriff’s office did a mock training at the courthouse and it was felt that security could improve.

“I’d like to get Jeff a vest, a badge and a gun in order to handle minor to major situations,” Rantala said. “If there’s a shooting in the courthouse, it’s nice because he’s here.”

Rantala said that Rule already has the training and knowledge to take the job.

“He’s been a security officer before and he’s fully behind it,” he said. “… He’d be a great asset to the courthouse.”

Rantala said has also talked to Judges Gotham, Burgess and Tingstad and said all of them were supportive of the hire.

The main reason for Rantala addressing the board was not to gain approval but rather to have the board mull it over.

Board Chair John Pelkola advised taking some time to discuss it.

“Let’s give it 30 days to go through the whole thing and get it set up and get it ready,” Pelkola said.

Rantala also addressed the board about hiring a new corrections officer and sending the person to training.

The board approved the hiring and the training.

Also heard at the meeting was an address by Ontonagon resident Rex Bullen about sustainable development.

Bullen is concerned over the United Nations Agenda 21 and how it aims to control the world’s population and property rights.

“Eventually. This isn’t going to happen tomorrow,” Bullen said. “This has been supported by our state department and will be presented to the Senate for ratification.”

Bullen is not in favor of ratification since then it would become law and according to Bullen, it would supplant the sovereignty of the United States and override the constitution and federal and state law.

“People are not aware of this,” Bullen said. “You can go to the U.N. site and read this. We want you to be very aware of this. A lot of this they tie into the local government units.”

Bullen also described it as the world being a big pie that must be cut up evenly, with wildlife receiving the biggest slice.

“If they have their way, your descendants won’t live here,” Bullen said. “… They could be living in a high-rise.”

Bullen added there is a lot more information to be found online.

“But you have to be careful you don’t get to the crazy, extremist websites,” Bullen said.

Board member Carl Nykanen commented on the presentation and said Agenda 21 puts a spin on the word “sustainable.”

“We read a lot about sustainable agriculture, which is good, but they’re taking that word and flipping it,” Nykanen said.

In other news, the board:

released $5,000 of tax levy funds to OCAP.

appointed Tom Poisson to the Ontonagon County Economic Development Corporation Committee.

appointed Joe Ricks, Dennis Makela, Bill Andrus, Dennis O’Brien and Tom Poisson to the Brownfield Authority.

approved the sending on any clerk who would like to attend to the Upper Peninsula Economic Development Alliance.

appointed Mario Carmella to the Veterans Affairs Board.