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Thread: The War on Dog Poo Rages

  1. #1

    Default The War on Dog Poo Rages

    The war on dog poo has taken a backseat to the war on Terror, but a recent battle captured headlines in the Downtown Express (http://www.zwire.com). *

    Seriously, though. *People seem to lose all sense of perspective sometimes. *I think the potential that someone might step in doggy doo and be in a bad mood for a few minutes does not warrant a "zero tolerance" policy and $1,000 fines. *Madness! *Read:
    *
    Dogwalker handcuffed in B.P.C.

    The offenses charged by one of the two plain-clothes PEP (Park Enforcement Patrol) officers who arrested him were disorderly conduct and "failure to comply with the directions of a Park Enforcement Patrol officer."

    Albright acknowledges that he had walked his Dalmatian dog across a no-dog zone, the planted median in Rector Pl., taking a shortcut back to his home in Liberty Terrace.

    "After they handcuffed me they talked about taking Nova to the pound, but fortunately a neighbor was there and took her home," Albright recalled.

    The incident was only one of several in which Battery Park City dog owners say they have been harassed and summonsed recently in a "Zero Tolerance" crackdown on even minor dog law violations, according to Jeff Galloway, of the Battery Park City Dog Association, a dog owners advocacy group.

    "It's difficult to imagine a home owner and father of three children being taken to the police station in handcuffs for a dog rule violation," said Galloway, also a member of Community Board 1. "We've had great relations with PEP officers in Battery Park City. If there was concern about people not picking up after their dogs, we've offered to do what we can to help the situation."

    Albright, who has retained a lawyer, would not talk about the specifics of the arrest but said the PEP officers did not identify themselves until after he was handcuffed. He said, however, that he would contest the summons and the $1,000 fine connected with it. Deputy Inspector Peter Winski, commanding officer of the First Precinct, said Albright was brought to the precinct on Wednesday night to receive the summons and was released after 20 minutes.

    The Battery Park City Authority hires the unarmed PEP officers to patrol Battery Park City under an agreement with the city Department of Parks and Recreation. Tessa Huxley, director of the Battery Park City Parks Conservancy, which maintains B.P.C.A. parks, referred all inquiries to the authority.

    Timothy Carey, president of the authority, did not return calls seeking comment.

    Galloway said he had phoned Leticia Remauro, Battery Park City Authority vice president for community and press relations, the day after Albright was arrested. "She was very upset and said she would stop it right away," Galloway said. Nevertheless, another dog owner was reported cited for a minor offense on Friday, he added.

    Remauro also did not return calls for comment.

    Some PEP officers in recent weeks carried tape measures and issued summonses for leashes longer than the maximum six feet specified in regulations, Galloway added.

    A sympathetic PEP officer told residents last week that the Zero Tolerance campaign was scheduled to last until March 4 and the officer who issued the most summonses was to have been rewarded with an extra week's vacation, according to Galloway.

    Anthony Notaro, a Community Board 1 member and a south B.P.C. resident, said the B.P.C.A. Zero Tolerance policy was shocking. "Nobody warned anyone about it," he said, and added that the community board's Battery Park City committee will review the situation on Tuesday.

    Stacey Sosa, a resident of the north end of Battery Park City and a Tribeca restaurant owner, said PEP officers (whom she referred to as "the guys in the green uniforms") had harassed her a month ago.

    "On two separate occasions I was out walking my dog with my six-year-old daughter when they stopped me," Sosa said. "The first time we were walking on the little street between Warren and Murray St. One of them shouted at me to please remove myself, my child and my dog from the street. I asked him why and he said 'Just do it.' I said I was doing nothing wrong and he threatened me. The other day my daughter and I were again walking our dog and a security vehicle pulled up and stopped us from crossing the street. They rolled down the window and said 'Ma'am, are you aware of the rules with walking your dog in Battery Park City?" and I said 'Did I do something wrong?' They said 'Take a look at this brochure because we're giving out a lot of tickets.' I told them the rules were the same ones that have always been in effect. They said, 'Just be careful. We're giving out a lot of tickets.'"

    Galloway said a Zero Tolerance policy for dog offenses was not the way to enforce dog regulations. "It makes residents the enemy of law enforcement agents," he said. "It's gotten so bad my wife is afraid to go out and walk the dog."

    Albert@DowntownExpress.com

  2. #2

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    Don't want to sound like an ass, but in my neighborhood this has gotten out of control. Doggie poo and pee is everywhere, I mean really every couple feet of sidewalk has some form of canine feces or urine lying on it. I could go into details but it's overall pretty disgusting.

    I don't mind a few droppings here and there but when it's cold people in my hood don't bother to pick up after their schnookums and the shit piles up after a long winter! The urine is ubiquitous. Dog owners here on the UES act like the sidewalks are their toilets. I have no problem with dogs living in the city, but those humans responsible should clean up their acts.

    As for senseless laws and their rigid enforcement, I agree it sucks for the majority. But there are many dog owners in NY who really should not own a pet and I hope the ticketing helps them come to that realization.

    I'm tired of walking the dog-poo gauntlet. CLEAN UP AFTER YOUR FREAKING DOGS PLEASE!!!!!! Otherwise I love the little droolers.

  3. #3

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    Quote: from dbhstockton on 11:49 am on Mar. 8, 2003

    Seriously, though. *People seem to lose all sense of perspective sometimes. *I think the potential that someone might step in doggy doo and be in a bad mood for a few minutes does not warrant a "zero tolerance" policy and $1,000 fines. *Madness! *Read:
    The issue is not the step in doggy doo and be in a bad mood. *It is a quality of life issue. *Why should we have to walk down streets that are dog doo mine fields? *Also, the smell of urine is unbearable in the summer when the temperature is baking the ammonia. *

  4. #4

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    What about having a sense of measure? 100$ would already be excessive and dissuasive enough. And dog owners don't need to feel persecuted by an intolerant mob.

  5. #5

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    Where's the "intolerant mob" though? NYC is VERY dog friendly, they come into stores, restaurants and pubs. There are many dog runs, hell my hood has runs specifically for "small" and "large" dogs! I'm more than happy to have some of my tax $ pay for this.

    Despite the article I don't think there are that many tix being given out in the city, perhaps BPC alone is just taking it too far. $100 for not cleaning up after your pooch sounds fine to me but it's obviously not being enforced in most of the city as evidenced by the sidewalks.

    The real issue to me is the negligence of dog-owners who leave feces on the sidewalks and lawns. If you're not one of those I have no beef with you.

  6. #6

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    Then the intolerant mob is thankfully only in BPC.

    Dog and people fights:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2003/03/16/nyregion/16FEAT.html

  7. #7

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    Dogs have advanced above, not only chimps, but homo sapiens
    as the lords of the public square.

    The turmoil in BPC also revolves around a proposed dog run.
    An area called "pumphouse plaza" (above the WTC cooling equipment) contained a little used grove of trees and a toddler play area. The trees were dying and needed to be replaced. A dog run was needed and proposed for the grove area. Nearby Gateway Plaza residents complained. The battle
    raged for two years (only temporarily halted by 9/11).
    It has balooned into a $2 million project to repair the pumphouse eqipment, move and expand the toddler play area to
    the grove, put the dog run where the play area was, and completely redesign the plaza.

    The power of canines.

  8. #8

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    The reason that the tix are so steep is because so few are actually given. *They are trying to use the high penalty as a deterrent against infractions against the rules... i.e., making examples of the few that get caught.

  9. #9

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    Yes, but is it fair? People shouldn't have to pay to make up for lack of police work. BPC residents may be able to afford it but others certainly aren't. 1000 dollars is obscene.

  10. #10

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    If you can't afford it, don't break the rule.
    That's what a deterrent is all about.

    (Edited by panos at 10:34 am on Mar. 19, 2003)

  11. #11
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    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    So panos, are you saying people should just accept these ridiculous rules? Why not make the fine a hundred thousand dollars so the rich people can be "deterred" as well? Obviously deterrents can go too far.

    This isn't about rules anyway, it's about some power hungry park patrol jackasses armed with tape measures, handcuffs, and $1000 ticket books who can't get enough of their shiny badges and the "authority" they possess.

  12. #12

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    I'll buy that. *That might be true as well. *
    You've convinced me.

  13. #13

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    In the last Downtown Express, it was stated that since the zero-tolerance policy started on Feb 1, 62 summonses were issued, but only one was for failure to pick up after a dog.
    There are "ambiguities" about no-dog-zones. A median park is off limits, but it was thought that the 2 sidewalks that cross it are ok to walk through.

    I think a parking ticket type fine is a sufficient deterrent.

  14. #14

    Default The war on dog poo rages.

    Great headline in The Onion today: "Heroic Pit Bull Journeys 2,000 Miles To Attack Owner"

  15. #15

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