Council Having Another Go At Free-Range Dogs


The Payson Town Council will once again try to get a handle on a leash law at its regular meeting Thursday.

The ordinance amending a section of the town code pertaining to dogs at large goes for a second reading and public hearing.

A section was added to the ordinance that excludes dogs owned or controlled by government law enforcement agencies. It also excludes dogs located on any rural trail leading to the national forest as designated in the Town of Payson Trails Master Plan.

According to the amended ordinance, when a dog is on such a trail it is to be under immediate control and supervision of the owner or custodian "whether by oral command or otherwise." But it doesn't have to be on a leash.

The section was added after the ordinance got a first reading and public hearing Jan. 14.

At the meeting, Susan Birchak of Round Valley, who had worked on the Trails Master Plan, asked the council to consider allowing horseback and bicycle riders to take their dogs on the trails without leashes.

The council asked Town Attorney Sam Streichman to rewrite the proposed leash law to include Birchak's suggestion.

It was the second time the council had sent the ordinance back to Streichman. Earlier, they asked to have the ordinance limit the leash law to dogs only, not animals at large.

Among other items on Thursday's agenda are:

  • a first reading and public hearing amending the town code pertaining to restricted parking for physically disabled people;
  • a request to approve a site plan submitted by Kaibab for its Sawmill Crossing project on Main Street;
  • a request to award the water tank construction to Eidson Steel Products for $271,760.
  • possible termination of the Governmental Access Cable Television Programming Services Contract with Larry Sheehan;
  • a presentation by Gerald Marshall, chief executive officer of Premier Healthcare of Arizona.

The Town Council meeting is at 6 p.m. in the Town Hall Chambers, 303 N. Beeline Highway.

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