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Tag: committee

Locust Point dog park group meets tonight

dogparkdesign

 
If you’re wondering when the Locust Point Dog Park is finally going to become a reality, there’s a chance to find out the latest tonight at a meeting tonight of dog park supporters.

It starts at 7 p.m. at City Limits, 1700 E. Fort Ave.

The dog park committee will be discussing plans for the Locust Point Festival (Saturday, September 26) and sharing the latest information from the city about when the park will open.

Original projections called for the dog area at Latrobe Park to open this summer.

The project was initially being handled by the citizens group, but the city offered to take it over and make it the first city-funded dog park. Since then, construction has begun, but judging from my drive-bys, hasn’t progressed too speedily. While the city is paying for construction, the citizen’s group will be responsible for maintenance.

Say Chow (or ciao) to those $1,000 fines

 

Baltimore’s $1,000 fine for letting a dog of its leash is, effectively, a thing of the past — if even that.

A city council committee yesterday — saying the amended penalty was passed by mistake — approved lowering the fine to $200 on a first offense, and promised that, for all 35 of the $1,000 tickets issued between the beginning of April and May 8, violators will have to pay no more than $200.

The new three-tiered fine — $200 for first offense, $400 for a second, $600 for a third — still requires approval by the full council, but little opposition is expected.

In opening the hearing, at which more than a dozen dog owners testified, Council Member James Kraft said, “This fine, very frankly … was a mistake. We were amending provisions of the law that were dealing with cruelty to animals and we increased penalties because some of these penalties were very old penalties. They weren’t acting as deterrents.

“Inadvertently, because that section had a lot of other provisions in it, that thousand dollar fine went across a much broader spectrum than we knew.”

Upon learning of what they had done, Kraft said, the council took steps to ask that the fine not be levied against violators.

Nevertheless, 35 $1,000 citations were handed out by the city’s office of Animal Control, with support from the police department — 23 of them since April 28.

“For those who have said that maybe this was a fundraising measure on behalf of the city, please be advised it clearly was not,” Kraft said.

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Leash law hearing is tomorrow

Reminder: A Baltimore City Council committee takes up the subject of leash laws at a 9 a.m. meeting in City Hall tomorrow (Tuesday).

The hearing, before the council’s Judiciary & Legislative Investigations Committee, was originally scheduled for April 28, but was postponed after a water main break forced City Hall to be emptied.

The council is reconsidering the $1,000 fine it approved for unleashed dogs earlier this year, leading to an outcry by some dog owners who say it’s excessive, especially in a city with only one small dog park. (A second, and the first the city has helped fund, is expected to open by fall.) Also to be presented at the hearing, before the council’s Judiciary & Legislative Investigations Committee, is an amendment to allow the city’s director of Recreation and Parks to enact off-leash hours at city parks. The meeting is in the City Council Chambers on the 4th floor of City Hall. (A picture ID required for admission to City Hall.)

As of this weekend, an online petition calling for a reduction of the fine had more than 1,500 signatures.

Water main break postpones leash hearing

This morning’s Baltimore City Council hearing on leash laws was postponed after a water main break forced City Hall to be emptied. It has been rescheduled for May 12 at 9 a.m.

After an outcry by dog owners, the council is reconsidering the $1,000 fine it approved for unleashed dogs. Also to be presented at the hearing of the council’s Judiciary & Legislative Investigations Committee was an amendment to allow the city’s director of Recreation and Parks to enact off-leash hours at city parks.

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