At last night's meeting of the Santa Cruz County Parks and Recreation Commission, Commissioners heard reports from members of an ad hoc committee studying a proposal to allow off-leash dogs on Corcoran Lagoon beach, and a counter proposal to retain and enforce existing County leash laws. After more than an hour of sometimes contentious public testimony, Commissioners voted to accept the County's Staff Report to:
"Direct Staff to prepare initial criteria for off-leash dog areas and an initial review of County park and beaches inventory to identify possible opportunities for fenced and unfenced off leash areas in County parks, with a report back to the Commission no later than April 2014."
Commissioners took no action on the proposal for a sunrise to sunset off-leash dog area on the beach at 20th Avenue, citing County, state, federal and international regulations that made the proposal unlikely to survive required environmental reviews. The Commissioners unanimously embraced a proposal by leash law proponents for the County to develop an Off Leash Dog Park Master Plan to develop objective County-wide criteria for selection, construction and management of off leash dog areas in County parks.
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