Ottawa Council continues dog park proposal discussion

By Jennifer Peryam -

OTTAWA — Discussion on a proposed dog park in Ottawa continued Monday night with residents neighboring the proposed area voicing their concerns with the proposed location.

Melissa Drerup, Ottawa resident and Putnam Pet Pals president, previously approached Ottawa Village Council on Nov. 26 with her proposal to locate a dog park behind Tractor Supply Company and Auto Zone that is owned by the city.

“Bringing a dog park here is something we have been working on for years,” Drerup said during Monday night’s meeting.

Approximately 20 neighboring residents attended Monday’s meeting to express their concern with the proposed location and requested another location be considered.

Dave Warnecke, who lives by where the dog park is being proposed, said he did not like the idea of it being located there.

“Personally I don’t think that is a place for a dog park. It’s a nice neighborhood, and I think there are other places to accommodate it,” Warnecke said.

Park Board President Brad Leis suggested Drerup attend the park board meeting to discuss other possible areas for a dog park.

Bill Klear, adjacent property owner, said he had concerns with property values declining if a dog park was located there.

Putnam Pet Pals conducted a Facebook page poll and there were 4,300 views of the poll with 250 responded and 235 people were favor of the dog park. Klear said not everyone has Facebook and can vote that way.

A resident asked who would be responsible for policing the clean up of dog waste.

Dreup said when a person shows interest in the park, there is a list of rules in the waiver users must sign, and one of those waivers is that a dog owner must clean up after their dog, and there would be degradable bags on site.

Marlin Steffan, who live near the proposed property, said he is not against the dog park, but does not support the proposed area.

Mayor Dean Meyer said the Pet Pals organization needs to go to the park board meeting to discuss options.

“If there is a neighborhood who wants to purchase the property, we will listen,” Meyer said. “We are taking care of the property and it’s our responsibility to our residents to be stewards of the property.”

In other business, the council approved suspending a late payment fee for a water bill and not charging a penalty until the city can figure out if the meter is working correctly.

By Jennifer Peryam

Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.

Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.

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