Parks & Rec Leash Policy Needs Additional Due Diligence & Compromise
DDOG Disappointed in Parks and Rec Special Meeting Outcome
June 20, 2011-- The Darien Parks and Recreation Commission dog leash policy, approved at the Commission’s June 16 public meeting, falls short of being the best solution for the community, according to the Darien Dog Owners’ Group (DDOG).
Darien resident and DDOG spokeswoman, Pam Zangrillo, said, “We are disappointed in the Commission’s decision. There has been an absence of fact-based decision making and needs additional due diligence and compromise.” Specifically:
· Unintended Consequences: The true impact of the new policy has not been vetted well enough. Currently under the new system, an inordinate amount of traffic and usage is pushed to Cherry Lawn causing an unfair strain on that park’s assets and resources. A multi-park solution with set hours is the best compromise for Darien. The Diller property and Stonybrook Park are not adequate or viable options.
· Disenfranchised stakeholders: Under the new rules, people who work during the day, especially commuters, will no longer be able walk and exercise their dogs off leash in the park because of a lack of evening hours (7pm-dusk) or any early morning hours on the weekend (dawn-8:30am).
· Undemocratic decision: The overly restrictive Woodland Park decision of on leash at all times fails to reflect the larger desire for compromise by the public as demonstrated overwhelmingly at the public hearing in May. As the largest park in Darien’s portfolio, there is room to share Woodland Park’s 64 acres.
· For All to Share: Darien’s parks are taxpayer supported and should be available to be shared by all. The decision should be driven by the public’s desires, the consensus of all users, and data/statistics about who is using our parks and when. Designated morning and evening hours in Cherry Lawn and Woodland Park is the right compromise.
For details regarding the regulations, see the Darien Patch article:
PLEASE write and call the Parks & Recreation Commission with your opinion.
Feel free to contact DDOG with any of your questions and thoughts.
DDOG (Darien Dog Owners Group) is a group of dog owners committed to nurturing a positive environment between dogs, people, and public safety in Darien, CT.