Leash law considered

Published 11:59 pm Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Suffolk City Council will consider putting a citywide leash law for dogs into effect during its meeting tonight.

A work session will begin at 4 p.m. in City Council chambers at 441 Market St. The regular meeting begins at 7 p.m.

The new leash law, if approved, would amend city code to make owners keep their dogs on a leash anywhere in the city, unless the dog is on its owner’s property, is being used to hunt in an approved hunting area, or if it got loose while the owner was trying to train it.

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Currently, the city exempts certain areas of the city from the leash law. Council members, however, want to make it uniform throughout the city.

Under the proposed ordinance, animal control officers who catch dogs running at large can impound the dogs. Owners of licensed dogs will be notified of the impoundment, and will be subject to a fine. After a week, unlicensed dogs caught running at large could be euthanized, sold to a federal or state agency or delivered to a local humane society or shelter.

Also during the City Council meeting, the council is set to vote on an ordinance that would provide a process for residents to request that certain residential streets be designated for golf cart use. After a person makes the request, city officials would look at the posted speed limit, average speed, nature of the neighborhood, and other factors. When golf carts are permitted on the road, people operating the carts must do so during the daytime, and must have a valid driver’s license and display a slow-moving vehicle emblem.

Other items on the agenda include public hearings for the capital improvements plan; a proposed new recreation center at the Salvation Army headquarters at 400 Bank St.; and a small church on Constance Road.