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Dubuque may forego public hearing on expanding dogs in parks

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DUBUQUE — Tonight the Dubuque City Council will receive a recommendation from the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee about having dogs on leashes in city parks.

The city banned pets in almost all city parks in 1969, a law that Kate Lydon and Robin McFarlane started a push to change in 2012.

Their efforts led to some partial changes, including last year, when the council voted to allow dogs on the nine trails within city limits.

The rules could soon be relaxed further, as Lydon, who is on the advisory committee, said her goal was to allow dogs on leashes in all city parks, except for Marshall Park.

She says increasing the areas where dogs are allowed is good for the whole city.

“I think having a more dog-friendly community in general is good for the economy and attracting the type of people we want,” Lydon said.

At Tuesday’s meeting, an item on the agenda indicated the council would receive a recommendation to not hold a special public session on the issue. Advisory chairman Kenneth Klinge said any input gained from such a meeting “would likely be similar to the large amount of public input received previously on the issue,” according to the letter.

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