The very contentious and continuing dispute over how or whether Southold Town should regulate dogs running free at town beaches and parks will pick up again tonight.
Residents are being asked to weight in on a code revision that would prohibit dogs and other domestic animals in recreation areas, picnic spots, children’s play areas and athletic fields where signs are posted saying no dogs are allowed. In addition, no dogs would be allowed on bathing beaches while lifeguards are on duty and within 50 feet of areas posted for piping plover and other endangered species. Exemptions would also be made for hunting dogs.
In all other areas, including beaches, owners would be required to keep their dogs leashed. The proposal has provoked backlash from pet owners and others who view dogs as a vital part of the community.
Last month the Town Board tabled the most recent rule change and will hold a new, less formal public forum on the topic at 7 p.m. at Town Hall. Check back at suffolktimes.com for a live blog from the forum.