Poll: Marco City Council considers charging a fee at Canine Cove

Do you support Marco charging to use the dog park?

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— Marco City Council directed City Manager Steve Thompson consider charging a fee to use Canine Cove, the new dog runs in Mackle Park, which were constructed entirely using donations from the community. Councilman Jerry Gibson recommended the annual fee on Monday for the Marco Island dog park, with fees being higher for non-residents than residents.

“Capture some money from some non-Island people using Canine Cove,” he said.

The idea came out of a discussion on whether to charge more fees to make up a projected $1.4 million revenue shortfall to be caused by decreased property values and taxes in 2011.

A specific fee proposal is to be developed by city staff, including the finance and parks and recreation departments.

For more on the budget discussion go to the related council blog under “To fee or not to fee.”

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Comments » 15

marco97 writes:

I find it hard to beleive that the dog park did not use any City money. there are 12 new 35 foot coconut trees and a tree company just removed the coconuts in January and I know that cost us some money. An irrigation system has been installed in the dog park and I am sure the tax payers are picking up the water bill. The dog park cost money to run let the people who have dogs pay for it. I don't think we should pay for it. The City charges to use Tennis/Racquetball canter why is the dog park different?

maxicat writes:

The dog park was built with private donations to the city. The tennis, racquetball courts, soccer fields, baseball fields, bike paths and other recreational opportunities were built with all of our taxes, whether we use them or not. We certainly don't begrudge paying our fair share for the greater good of Marco Island. This is why the dog park should be maintained by the city with no fees. I also question the legality of charging a fee when money was donated to the city as a nonprofit enterprise and letters were sent out by the city for tax purposes to donors.

GFonda writes:

I almost got raped when I traversed the "big" dog park to get to "my" fenced area when the construction was going on. I screamed and yelled and finally made it to the gate to get out after my Daddy rescued me. So, if there is security at Canine Cove to protect me and to collect the "fee" that would ensure that the "off-island" pouches pay their fair share, I would support the proposal,


catey58 writes:

I'm a full time Marco resident & feel that Canine Cove is one of the first 'user-friendly' things to come along for residents. If people from off the island use the park it stands to reason that they'll spend some money while on Marco. Is there nothing that our city government won't attempt to over-regulate. Why don't we just relax with Doggie Park & have some fun.

blondie writes:

Another stunning suggestion by the powers that be. First of all I do not have a dog. Some people complained that they did not like dogs to have the run of the park. They suggested that there be a "special" dog friendly area for people to walk and run their pets. Now that we have this dog friendly area, they now want to charge people for usage. This is absurd! More and more Marco is getting to be a very unfriendly place for residents and visitors alike. It is great that people who have dogs have a dog friendly place to run their pets. I have never seen a dog park where people were charged admission it is absurd. Mackle Park is a public park for all to use and enjoy. What is next? Charging families to pay for their children using the basketball courts?

ajm3s writes:

What you are seeing is an attempt to increase revenue under any means possible. The city wants to increase the percentage of fee based revenue vis-a-vis ad vilorem taxes and its claim will be to cite other communities that have higher values.

But I warn this island of the consequences of a fee based revenue structure.

Example: Check out the fees generated by Code Compliance year over year, the fines are up significantly, but the revenue is ....... Geez and we now have so many new code enforement officers.

Its all about costs whether those imposed on its residents in the form of fees or cost associated with the impact of those fees, the blight of abandoned homes.

Team Leadership Marco?

katman724 writes:

Charging a fee for entrance into our Canine Cove is seriously misguided. Animal lovers paid for the complete cost of this haven because there was a need. Clearly, our City Council (Jerry Gibson in particular) MUST immediately stop treating animal lovers and their canine companions like second class citizens because we will remember such mistreatment in the next election cycle! Please reconsider this ill-conceived fee.

heretoooolong writes:

How about charging to use the bathrooms at the park, a dollar a flush. Sidewalk use is way up, we could charge for using those. You want to cross the street? Hey, those crossing signal things are cheap, please insert a quarter. WOOHOO, we could make millions! How much should the air we breathe go for??

cmonmanreally writes:

From March 10, 2010:

"NAPLES — A Naples advisory board said this week it supports plans to build an off-leash dog park on city property.

The city’s community services advisory board on Tuesday threw its support behind all aspects of a private group’s plans for an off-leash dog park, including a proposed user fee.

The park – dubbed Central Bark by its creators – is tentatively scheduled to be built on the city’s campus on Riverside Circle. The park will include space for small and large dogs, sidewalks, fences and water fountains.

The two-phase project comes with a projected cost of more than $205,000, and the group behind the park hopes to raise as much in private funding for the park as possible.

While the group plans to fund-raise to help construct the park, the plan includes an annual fee, which would go toward operating and maintenance costs.

The group is proposing a $120-a-year user fee, said Naples attorney Will Dempsey, one of the community members behind the park.

Central Bark would be the only park in Collier County to charge a user fee. Rover Run at Veterans Community Park in North Naples is free, while Canine Cove at Mackle Park on Marco Island accepts donations to maintain the park.

While the board supported Dempsey’s proposal, board member Rosyln Katz said she was slightly concerned about the user fee and registration process.

“There’s something to me that’s wrong about having to register to go to a dog park,” Katz said. “To me it doesn’t go with the dog park. There’s something more welcoming about a dog park than having to be registered, and licensed and signing agreements in advance.”

Dogs would receive tags – much like their county registration tags – in order to use the park. Dempsey said one of the reasons behind requiring registration would be to protect the city from liability.

The registration process would ensure all of the dogs had the necessary shots and paper work required by the group.

The board’s support means the park is one step closer to becoming a reality.

The park proposal will be discussed sometime in April by the city’s planning advisory board, and if approved will go before Naples City Council sometime late this spring."

See, Marco, yet another reason on how you do not handle things properly. Hind sight is never 20/20 for you, rather try to keep up with Naples. Keep your corrupt "paradise" and Naples will enjoy reality.

MarcoAvenger writes:

lovelifeorelse - What exactly is the purpose of your post? As I see it, you do not have a dog in this fight. Does it make you feel better to try (Notice I say Try) to cut down the residence of Marco Island. I can tell you that no one on Marco is envious of Naples. We have a much better quality of life. I also do not see where you have any room to criticize the Marco Island government. Haven’t you ever heard people in Glass houses should not through stones. We fight amongst ourselves, but it is like family we have a vested interest in what goes on here. And by the way we were the first with a dog park. I think Naples is following our lead.

Johnnymarco49 writes:

That a boy Jerry....we hear nothing from you almost the entire time you are on council and this is what you finally come up with. Consider the consequence of the fee on a donated amenity by the people of Marco. Is the city going to have personel cleaning up the area every day? I won't be picking up after my 3 dogs if I have to pay to get in. If the city is going give it to us I can leave it for them.

ajm3s writes:

Let me see if I understand this statement in the article quoted by livelifeorelse

"Dogs would receive tags – much like their county registration tags – in order to use the park. Dempsey said one of the reasons behind requiring registration would be to protect the city from liability.

"The registration process would ensure all of the dogs had the necessary shots and paper work required by the group."

Let me see. We need a separate dog park registration because another government entitiy (the county) that requires registration of domesticated animals is inadequate documentation for entering a dog park.


Recommendation: See Ms. Chapman's response in Letter to the Editor. It is clear and concise.


ajm3s writes:

Collier County Laws state that...

•All Dogs And Cats Must Be Licensed with the County and vaccinated for rabies by the age of three months. This must be done annually.
•To license your pet, you may apply for a license and pay through your local veterinarian or visit DAS at 7610 Davis Blvd. in Naples, FL.
•All licenses must be Attached To The Collar Of The Animal.

costarica (Inactive) writes:

Does the City need money from every enjoyment our residents and animals have???? Enough already! We pay and pay and pay. Let us have one enjoyment without extra costs, I think Marco residents have paid enough to live here! If you must, put a donation bucket at the animal park and let people donate if they feel so inclined.

kosherdeli writes:

Free Access and Freebies for all are over, Dogs included. Maybe now the City will have enough money to make the Islands Puppy Palace meet ADA Codes! How nice it would be for Islanders with Service Dogs to have a place to let there Dogs Run also. After all accessibility is the Law under the Americans with Disability Act!

The non-accessible issue at the Dog Park is like this, the City has two choices, they can pay now and make the Dog Park Wheelchair Accessible, or they can choose to do nothing as they have done so far. Let this be an alert to Dog Park Users and Taxpayers if the City continues to due nothing in regard to making this Dog Park Wheelchair Accessible and waits until the ADA gets involved not only will the cost of making the Dog Park Accessible increase the City will be subject to Daily Fines, the fines will be retroactive from the date of this parks grand opening. Think about it, if this happens an annual fee at the Dog Park could be very costly. It doesn’t matter if the Dog Park was donated or not the fact that it is not Wheelchair Accessible is against the Law according to the American with Disability Act known as the ADA!

This has nothing to due with the Dog Park, however it has to do with 2 Dogs and the 2 pigs who I witnessed walking there dogs along Elkcam in front of A-Tech Automotive on 3/16 they let there 2 dogs Poop on A-Tech’s property and never even attempt to pick it up as A-Tech and I watched. How low class and disgusting you people are, you are a disgrace to the majority dog owners. You might as well let your 2 dog’s just poop in his car wash bays at least he could wash it down.

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