Monday, January 22, 2007

Parks Department Hearing

Here's an excerpt from "AMNY":

"Parks to hold public hearing on leash laws

January 22, 2007, 11:42 AM EST

The Parks Department will hold a public hearing on proposed changes to its dog leash laws Feb. 22, kicking off the final phase of a long-running debate over where and when the city's 1.4 million pups may run off-leash.

Anti-off-leash groups say untethered dogs are a threat to other park users while pro-dog groups say socialized, well-exercised dogs are less aggressive.

After several barking matches between dog proponents and foes, the Board of Health voted unanimously on Dec. 5 to amend the health code, allowing off-leash hours in parks that do not have dog runs.

Previously it had stated dogs must be kept on a leash no longer than six feet at all times.

Now Parks will begin its process of deciding whether to formally amend its laws on the books, and will accept comment from city residents before it makes a decision.

"The proposed amendment will simply ensure that Parks rules and regulations mesh neatly with the rules and requirements of other state and local agencies regarding dogs," a notice from Parks officials stated.

The Parks hearing will be held Feb. 22 at the Chelsea Recreation Center located at 430 West 25th Street at 1 p.m.

Those in attendance will have three minutes before a panel of Parks Department officials to present arguments either for or against rule changes that would cement designated off-leash hours.

Written statements can be mailed to the following address and must be received by 5 p.m. Feb. 22 to be considered:

New York City Department of Parks & Recreation
Office of General Counsel – Alessandro G. Olivieri
830 Fifth Avenue, Room 313,
NY, NY 10021."