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REPOST — Dog owners upset park hours limited

[Editor’s note — spellchecker has a lot of great uses, but occasionally it creates havoc with stories and their content at all newspapers. This was such an article and we are reposting.]

By Mike Williscraft
NewsNow

Grimsby residents who frequent the municipal dog park on Lake Street got an unwanted surprise when they dropped by the facility a week ago.

They were greeted with a sign which stated, “This facility will be locked half an hour before dusk starting Nov. 2, 2015. The night that sign was posted, Oct, 29, the park was locked.

“I couldn’t believe it,” said Ruth Prosser, a regular at the park who has started a petition to asking that the limitation is removed.

Nov 5 Page 1At 4:40 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon there were about 30 dog owners and their four-footed friends at the site when a town employee pulled up to lock the gate.

While interviews and photos were being shot over a half-hour span, the gate was not locked and the town vehicle left the lot at 5:10 p.m.

“It really makes not sense. As a start, with the sun going down before 5, nobody could get home after work and get here in time,” said Nancy Smethurst.

While Prosser has been circulating a petition in recent days, Ald. Steve Berry has been following up with another resident who complained.

“When our parks department was reviewing the original approval for the hours for the dog park it was discovered that the hours are 7 a.m.-9:30 p.m. This should address your concern,” write Berry in an email to Suzanne Levere.

“The sign will be changed in the next couple of days.”

Despite that note sent late Tuesday afternoon, the town employee was at the park to lock the gate the same time it was sent.

The residents have no understanding of how such an arbitrary decision could have been made in the first place.

“The sign went up supposedly giving us notice and it was locked the same day,” said Prosser.

“It was also locked early over the weekend, too.”

Berry did add in a subsequent email that he brought it up to his council cohorts on Monday night and “it would appear that everyone was in agreement that the hours need to change.”

He said the issue has been referred to the town’s recreation services committee, which will meet later in November.

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