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Bid to temporarily shutter dog parks ends with a whimper

Councillors motion to close two fenced-in, off-leash dog parks until a staff report on a new location is completed fails to get needed council support
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The Bristol Street Park fenced-in, leash-free dog park. Tony Saxon/GuelphToday file photo

A motion intended to close the city’s two fenced-in, off-leash dog parks until the city gets more information on a possible better location failed to advance to the debate stage Monday night.

Ward 3 councillor June Hofland’s motion called for the facilities at Peter Misersky Park and Bristol Street Park to be closed until staff reports back to council with a study it is currently doing looking into a potential dog park location in a non-residential area of the city.

Her motion needed seven councillors to support it for it to move on to Committee of the Whole meeting in September. It failed by an 8-5 vote (In favour: Hofland, Leanne Piper Caron, Bob Bell, James Gordon, Phill Allt; Against: Cam Guthrie, Dan Gibson, Mark MacKinnon, Cathy Downer, Dominique O’Rourke, Mike Salisbury, Christine Billings, Rodrigo Goller).

Hofland said she brought forth the motion because of new information and that she didn’t realize the negative impact the dog park at Peter Misursky would have on nearby residents.

Her failed motion read as follows:

“That the fenced off-leash dog parks at the Peter Misersky park and Bristol Street park be closed until such time as staff have reported back on the feasibility of a fenced dog park located in a non-residential area for consideration in the 2021 budget.”