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Kovu the K-9

Acting Britt Police Chief Tyler Harmon with Kovu, the new K-9. 

BRITT | The Britt City Council recently met the newest -- and furriest -- member of the police department. 

Tyler Harmon, acting police chief, brought  Kovu, a 1-year-old German shepherd, into the City Council room immediately after the Oct. 2 meeting. 

Kovu enjoyed the attention as council members, city staff and others who were at the meeting petted him and fed him treats.  

Harmon, who is Kovu's handler, picked him up during the last week of September. 

"Kovu is now with me at all times," he said. 

He said Kovu hasn't been certified yet, so "right now he's just riding around" in Harmon's patrol car during shifts to get him used to being in the vehicle. 

Harmon and Kovu begin K-9 training on Oct. 22. The training will last until Thanksgiving. 

Kovu's duties will include handler protection, tracking and drug detection. 

The police department raised funds to get Kovu. The money came from both individuals and businesses. 

Harmon said he's still waiting to hear if the department will receive a $3,000 grant from the Hanson Foundation, which will help with ongoing care and feeding for Kovu as well as equipment upgrades. 

In other business, the council approved a tax exemption certificate for $800,000 more in general obligation urban renewal bonds for the Burgardt Commercial Park. 

On Sept. 25, those bonds were sold to Banker's Bank of Madison, Wisconsin, which offered a 3.1 percent interest rate. 

The commercial park has cost the city about $1.3 million, including land purchase, hotel demolition, asbestos removal and utilities installation, but it initially only bonded for about $635,000.

City officials are hoping to recoup some  general fund expenditures and cover the remaining costs through the additional bonding.

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