Dogs on beaches bylaw changes trial rejected by Yankalilla council

DISAPPOINTED: Some of the members of a group which supports changes to the dogs on beaches bylaws. A trial of changes was rejected by council. Photo: Dani Brown.
DISAPPOINTED: Some of the members of a group which supports changes to the dogs on beaches bylaws. A trial of changes was rejected by council. Photo: Dani Brown.

A push to trial changes to bylaws regarding dogs on beaches in the Yankalilla council district has failed.

At the December council meeting, councillors rejected a proposed trial to allow dogs off leash at all times from 200 metres north of Normanville Jetty to 100m south of the Carrickalinga toilet block, excluding 100m north and south of board walk access at Carrickalinga Sands.

Even a motion to commend the petition organisers for their “tireless effort” in bringing the need to council’s attention was lost.

Before the vote, Coral Ward read a deputation on behalf of Pam Kirsten, a leader of the group supporting change to bylaws, which suggested creating a working group with councillors and community members to facilitate change.

She said 1200 people signed a petition for change over the last six weeks – about 200 of them were visitors. 

“The petition has asked for a new consultation to review the current dog bylaws,” she said.

“We see this group working to bring to the table as many of the various views as possible.”

Councillor Simon Rothwell said some community members had called councillors “idiots” in a Facebook group supporting changes, while councillor Rick Williams said he had been subject to abuse over the issue.

Councillor Rachel Preston, who moved the motion, said there were benefits in health of both human and dog when allowing dogs off the leash in designated areas during all times of the day.

The gallery was nearly full with community members who supported the trial, and once the decision was made, they were audibly disappointed.

The bylaws introduced in December 2016 will continue to remain in place.

Another resolution which was approved will see council include in the 2018-19 annual business plan a “consultation process funding for a dog park in Bungala Park at the location determined in the adopted Bungala Park Masterplan ... or an alternative location, should Bungala Park not be a preferred location”.

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