Thursday, August 12, 2010

More info on new animal ordinance

I finally heard back from town in the form of Town Manager Mike McLaurin regarding the new animal ordinance that passed.

I had sent him a series of questions seeking qualifications on the new animal ordinance and he was kind enough to respond. I've followed up his answers with additional questions, but here's what I've got so far.

* According to Mike, this new animal ordinance was in response to a close call between two dogs during a recent town event. John Tiley at The Waxhaw Gazette says it occurred at the fireworks show on July 4th and mentions a couple of incidents.
There have been a couple of incidents at recent events where owners were not able to control their pets. Mainly, this was at the fireworks show the town had on July 4th. Commissioner Diller was voting against, stating that he was a pet lover and would not want families to miss a chance to spend time with their favorite friend. Unfortunately though, the cause was too late.
* The penalties for violating the new ordinance are as follows: Minimum first offense $10; second $15; third $25; fourth and subsequent $50.
The details I'm still hazy on (that hopefully Mike can clarify) involve the following:
* Boundaried vs. unboundaried events -- Some town events, like the Autumn Treasures festival have clear boundaries, so enforcement should be pretty easy. Other events, like First Friday events have no boundaries so enforcements seems much more subjective.

* What's constitutes a town event? -- The ordinance states that an event is a town event if the town contributes full or partial sponsorship of the event, including in-kind contributions. It is unclear whether the town allowing an event to take place on its streets constitutes an in-kind contribution. If so, that would mean any event within town not completely on private property would be subject to the new ordinance.
When I hear back with clarifications from the town, I'll post them.

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