Forsyth city ordinance:
7-3-6: Public Nuisance Animals:
A. A public nuisance animal is any animal that unreasonably annoys humans, endangers the life or health of other animals or persons, or substantially interferes with the rights of citizens, other than their owners, to the enjoyment of life or property. A public nuisance animal shall include, but not be limited to, any animal that:
1. Is repeatedly found at large;
2. Damages the property of persons other than its owner;
3. Repeatedly molests or intimidates pedestrians or passersby;
4. Repeatedly chases vehicles;
5. Repeatedly barks, howls, whines, or growls such that it disturbs the quiet enjoyment of the neighborhood as documented by persons living or working in the immediate vicinity of the dog:
a. For a period of more than ten (10) minutes between the hours of ten o’clock (10:00) P.M. and seven o’clock (7:00) A.M.;
b. For a period of more than twenty (20) minutes between the hours of 7 o’clock (7:00) A.M. and ten o’clock (10:00) P.M.
c. It shall be an absolute defense to such violation if the owner or other person maintaining or harboring the dog proves by a preponderance of the evidence that the primary reason the dog was barking, howling, whining, or growling was that the dog was being provoked by a person or was otherwise being incited, or was acting as a guide dog, hearing dog, service dog, work dog, or guard dog:
6. Causes fowling of the air by odor and thereby creates unreasonable annoyance or discomfort to neighbors or others in close proximity to the premises where the animal is kept or harbored;
7. Attacks other animals or is found to otherwise be a menace to the public health, welfare, or safety.
B. It shall be unlawful for any person to have in his/her possession, ownership, maintenance or control, a public nuisance animal.
C. Whenever a person has been found guilty of a violation of this section, he/she shall be found guilty of a misdemeanor, and the court may:
1. Impose a fine of not less than twenty five dollars ($25.00) or more than five hundred dollars ($500.00), and may be confined in the county jail for a period of not more than six (6) months.
2. Require payment of all impoundment fees and all reasonable costs incurred in providing necessary veterinary attention and treatment for the subject animal and any and all other reasonable costs incurred as a result of the violation.
3. Depending upon the severity of the offense, order that the animal be seized and destroyed.
The author of this ordinance, Ms Convery, has ‘jumped ship’ and is hopefully running a goat farm somewhere. I’m sure she has no intention of justifying this ordinance, beyond the previously opined “fairness”. My opinion and/or interpretation is not official policy, however let me try.
Re repeatedly; it’s ambiguous. Pick any number more than one.
Re documented; you’re dreaming if you think this means a written note with dates and times, or the same as demonstrable proof a violation occurred. No, you’d better buy a video camera, and you’ll also need a computer and know how to use it, if you expect to get any dog citations in Doofusville. If you wish to shoot video at 2:00 A.M. however, refer to Ms Convery for make/model, because I don’t have the slightest idea! Who said a lawyer must have actionable or practical intelligence? Do you think a lawyer enjoys driving 85 miles in pursuit of problem dogs?
Re persons; plural. So a neighbor will also require all of the above. If the neighbor isn’t already awake at 2:00 A.M. due to barking dogs, then you must wake him and shoot concurrent videos. If the neighbor elects to shoot you instead, that’s your problem! Ms Convery, or perhaps the mayor, would probably say “good, one less complainer”.
Re For a period of more than….; violates code 7-1-11, but Ms Convery doesn’t give a rat’s ass!
Re guide dog, hearing dog, service dog, work dog, or guard dog: Whatever happened to lap dogs and mutts? I’m still wondering what a “work dog” does within city limits.
Re it shall be unlawful for…..; Verbiage signifying nothing. Even dogs with prior convictions are now sacrosanct!
My opinion; The Doofusville Five have indulged in a systematic and systemic campaign of obfuscation and nonfeasance, so this ordinance comes as no surprise! Only a doofus would approve this ordinance. The comprehension of animal control officers, Tweedledumb and Tweedledee, also no concern, since they only follow orders and do nothing. Why in the hell do you suppose they were appointed animal control officers? You could have a simple, concise, straight forward ordinance, but you’d still need someone to enforce it. Who would that be?????
All is not hopeless, it only takes 217 registered voters to recall doofuses unwilling to do their job.
MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY HOLIDAYS