Dog bylaw likely to need further input

TRACY NEAL
Last updated 13:00 18/07/2012

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Nelson City Council is due to agree to another round of public consultation on rules around the control of dogs in the central city.

The community services committee is scheduled to release a recommendation tomorrow to withdraw the original proposed dog control and policy bylaw review, notified earlier this year, and seek feedback on a new proposal.

In March councillors spent several hours thrashing out the finer points of the definition of dog control at the end of a large number of submissions to the earlier draft bylaw, and put the matter on hold in May when councillors realised suggested changes would fundamentally alter the statement of proposal put out to the public. Their decision to fine-tune the proposal and go back to the public, which triggered criticism from some councillors, was out of concern over any potential legal challenge to the consultation process.

The council decided in May that their preferred direction would be to allow dogs off leads in most places (if under control), to require dogs to be on a lead in urban centres and most neighbourhood reserves, and to continue to prohibit dogs from a list of certain areas including conservation reserves, sports fields and playgrounds.

If councillors agree to the recommendation, the consultation process will take place for a month during July-August, with a hearing scheduled for September 24-25 with the aim of adopting the policy on November 1.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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