Letter to the Editor
Reasonable options needed
Jul 23, 2015 at 1:28 PM
Pictures of bagged animal waste in the ad indicate that the issue is not the failure of pet owners to clean up after their dogs, but rather that there not enough trash cans for all beach users, including pet owners. There is currently one trash can in the dog-friendly beach area, and that one is quite a distance from the water.
If the location of the beach poses a problem, rather than institute a “ban,” simply relocate the “dog-friendly” portion to a more suitable location, maybe a few yards to the north of the existing dog-friendly beach, where beach users would be more visible from the road and sidewalk, and trash containers would be easier to service.
The city’s dog-friendly beach is not promoted in the Area Visitors Guide in the section titled “Dog-friendly options for visitors,” nor online at Visitgrandhaven.com. It would appear to be a local secret. Putting the majority of blame for trouble on out-of-towners is unsupported. It’s more likely locals are causing the issues, which can be solved through cooperation and consideration.
The published piece mentions that, “Each family that lives nearby has horror stories of pet owners.” As a homeowner “who lives nearby,” I have no such “horror stories,” nor does my family. I do object to being mischaracterized in order to mistakenly support a personal cause of others.
City leaders are elected to use their best judgment for us all. When we disagree, a reasoned plea supported with a view of the big picture works wonders. Presenting “the whole truth” with reasonable options would likely be more fully supported than simply instituting a seasonal ban to appease one set of neighbors.