City Department Heads Sworn In, Council Considers Pets At Downtown Events

Staff Writer

The common council discussed residents having their pets at downtown events during their meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 14.

Councilwoman Jennifer Romano said they were discussing the idea because dogs weren’t allowed downtown during First Fridays and Old Settlers Days. Romano said there was prior discussion on how it can be arranged for people to bring their pets, and the Columbia City Police Department were also involved in the discussions. Romano said it was hard to decide what to allow.

“We decided that what if we just leave it up to event organizer to decide if they want to have animals at their event, or not have them at their event? There’s a couple different reasons why that would make sense. One is they need to have a clear understanding on what they’re doing so the police department knows whether they’re supposed to care about dogs downtown during an event, or not. Maybe it’s an event where it makes sense to have dogs downtown? We wanted to bring it to the whole council to see how everyone felt about it. We also feel like if someone brought one, and it bit someone, where’s the responsibility?” Romano said.

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