To the editor,
A group of well-meaning and public spirited Croton residents are seeking help from our Mayor and Village Board. We are requesting a change to the existing park and recreation law that prohibits dogs from any and all public parks and are seeking a dog-friendly park designation where our dogs will be welcome. Animals are much better behaved and “polite” when walking with their owners than many of their owners are! Making such a place available not be complicated or expensive. It should be relatively simple. Clearly, we have several spots that would be perfect for this kind of activity and even the possibility for dog swimming. We are suggesting consideration of the following.
Amend the existing ordinance to read “dogs are permitted between the hours of X and X on Monday, Wednesday and Friday…or…”between the hours of X and X on odd (or even) days of the week.” This would be sufficient and dogs would always be attended by their owners watchful eyes. This would present little hardship for people who may not want to be near dogs as they could easily plan their attendance for times other than those designated as dog-friendly times.
In truth, we know that Senasqua Park, Croton Landing and Black Rock are beautiful and underutilized parks and any or all of these three would be most suitable sites. We suggest all three as it would minimize any impact on any one park. In addition, because no costs would be involved, (no fences, no wood chip base, no blacktop) and if it was unworkable after an initial trial period, it would be simple to repeal the amendment. It goes without saying that dog owners would remain responsible to clean up after their dogs as a condition of use.
Such a change is easily and quickly doable and would bring Croton in line with other communities and the county park system. Now is the perfect time for a trial period as the parks are even less used now than in the summer months.
This action would be a clear indication that Croton officials are willing to work with any group of residents who come before them with reasonable requests..