Dog license fees may double or triple, despite town council qualms about the impact on dog owners during hard times.
The plan would boost the annual license fee for an unsterilized dog from $7 to $20 and for a sterilized dog from $3 to $7.
Councilor Richard Croy suggested the increases, after learning that Payson charged far less than Gila County or many other towns. Gila County charges a $15 license fee for an unaltered dog, Coconino charges $20, Maricopa charges $40, Camp Verde charges $8, Show Low charges $15, Sedona charges $25, Star Valley charges $7 and Winslow charges $15.
Croy said the higher fees would bring in more money and also make pet owners more responsible for their pets.
However, Councilor Mike Vogel said he favored a higher license fee for unsterilized dogs as a way of getting people to get their animals fixed and reduce the population of unwanted pets. He spoke against the increase at this time, given the economic problems facing many families.
“If you’re serious about” encouraging people to get their pets fixed “it’ll be $50, but having said that: I know some families who can’t afford the license fees. Come back with this in two years and I’m all over it, but I’m not willing to take a dog away from a kid in these times.”
Mayor Kenny Evans protested that the town won’t go out and take unlicensed dogs away from their owners — unless the dogs are out of their yards and off the leash.
“This has to do with dogs picked up because they’re running loose.”
“People out there are worrying about finding $2. Right now, this town cannot afford to raise these fees. They cannot afford it. We should table this to 2012,” Vogel said.
However, the council then voted 6-1, with Vogel in stubborn dissent, to approve the new fee schedule.
Payson (old) 7.00 3.00
Payson (new) 20.00 7.00
Bullhead City 30.00 20.00
Camp Verde 8.00 6.00
Casa Grande 25.00 15.00
Chino Valley 32.00 8.00
Clifton 7.00 5.00
Duncan 8.00 5.00
Eagar 25.00 5.00
Kingman 20.00 5.00
Nogales 15.00 7.00
Parker 20.00 10.00
Prescott 30.00 6.00
Prescott Valley 25.00 5.00
Sedona 25.00 7.50
Show Low 15.00 5.00
Snowflake 7.00 5.00
St. Johns 5.00 5.00
Star Valley 7.00 5.00
Yuma 20.00 12.00