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“Room for improvement” with dog control service says WDC chief executive

2 Oct 2014, 9:30 AM

STORY / ARTICLE: WAITOMO NEWS – www.waitomonews.co.nz

WAITOMO District Council chief executive Chris Ryan admits there is “lots of room for improvement” regarding council’s dog control service.

At Tuesday’s monthly meeting, councillor Terry Davey raised the service issue directly with regulatory services manager John Moran.

Mr Moran was at the meeting to present the Dog Control Policy and Practices Report for 2013/2014.

“At one of our recent workshops you [Mr Moran] felt that the overall control setup we have at the moment wasn’t really satisfactory,” said Mr Davey.

“I agree with that and a lot of people out there probably do to. “So I want to know, are there any measures being taken to change that system?

NEED A YEAR

Before Mr Moran could reply, Mr Ryan said it was unfair to judge council’s delivery of dog control only six months into taking over the service from a contractual arrangement.

“I don’t think it’s possible to measure where there is a failure or a need to address anything further until we’ve actually got at least 12 months under our belt.

“I don’t think it is reasonable to say that it’s not working right now but, I will accept that there is lots of room for improvement.”

CONCERNS

In Mr Moran’s annual report, he highlighted several concerns ranging from a high number of barking complaints (90) to lack of registrations.

“Recently there has been increased public concern that stray dogs in the district are on the increase and the number of dogs which appear to be unregistered is escalating,” he said.

“Because of these concerns, council will ensure that urban dog control becomes a priority in the ongoing delivery of the district’s dog control services.”

Other statistics showed the total number of dog related complaints was up 14, to 31, compared to 2012/2013 while infringement notices were down 45 to 24 and the number of dogs impounded reduced from 175 to 151.

The number of “menacing” dogs (28) remained the same.

Click here to view Waitomo District Council’s full dog control policy and practices.