Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Doing the Barking Dog Shuffle

You never know where you're going to see the barking dog issue being raised.

Take, for example, a story in today's Arizona Daily Star. It's about a Tucson city councilman's effort to have local liquor license hearings held in this city, instead of up in Phoenix.

The Arizona Daily Star's online comment forum is a pretty lively place. The comments after this story are no exception. One comment jumped right out at me. It's from one of the councilman's constituents.

The constituent lives in a neighborhood with an ongoing barking problem, and has not gotten any help from this councilman.

Quoting the constituent's comment, "[I] have written several times to ask why barking dogs are not included in red tag ordinance. It seems unfair to me that if a neighbor has a loud party I can call and they will be stopped, ticketed and fined. But if I have a neighbor with a dog that barks 24/7/365 I need to file a complaint, keep a log, take off work, go to a hearing, and hope that the issue gets resolved."

Nothing like doing the barking dog shuffle, is there?

The commenter goes on to say, " I did get a response once that animal noise ordinances are county ordinances so I need to go to the county supervisors to complain. Not him. Even though the problem impacts a large percentage of his constituents, it's not his problem."

If you're reading this in the city of Tucson, you know just how lame our barking dog noise complaint process is. It's handled by the Pima Animal Care Center, a county agency, and here it is in all of its un-glory. It starts with a Sternly Worded Letter. And goes nowhere fast from there.

I've used this joke of a complaint process many times. Even went to mediation once, and oh, was that ever a waste of time.

Want to change this sad state of affairs? Contact the Tucson Mayor and City Council members. Perhaps we could have a barking law like this one.

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