THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING
< Back to front page Text size +

Newton aldermen approve dog park fees

Posted by Sarah Thomas  March 8, 2011 09:15 AM

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

The Newton Board of Aldermen approved an amendment to the city's off-leash ordinance that would allow the Parks and Recreation Commissioner Bob DeRubeis to set fees for residents using the areas.

The vote was 19-0, with five aldermen absent from the meeting.

The vote comes on the heels of the amendment being approved by the programs and services committee on Feb. 23. The fee will be $50 per dog for residents of the city, an amount settled on by DeRubeis in conjunction with the city's Off-Leash Area Working Group.

"The group did an enormous amount of work," said Alderman Charlie Shapiro. "Citizens were directly involved in the process."

Though the fee system will be enforced by Newton police, Shapiro said he anticipates few problems with enforcement.

"We will have a reasonable amount of enforcement, but I anticipate there will probably be enough self-enforcement from dog owners trying to do the right thing," Shapiro said.

Concerns about the cost of paying for the off-leash areas, some of which will need to be protected by fences, have dogged the ordinance since well before it was passed in August of last year.

Alderwoman Susan Albright, who has been meeting with the Off-Leash Area Working Group, said that two proposed areas, Hunnewell and Cabot, would have fencing of some kind installed.

"We have also received a gift from a citizen of $50,000, which will be dedicated to the off-leash dog areas," Albright said.

Albright said the fees could go into effect by June.

Sarah Thomas can be reached at

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article