ALLOW dogs access to KAILUA District Park and Dismiss citation to Jeanne Hailer

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On January 23, 2018 while walking their tame and LEASHED dog along the perimeter of Kailua District Park, Jeanne Hailer, a senior Kailua resident and her friend were cited by an HPD officer for walking the dog through the park. They were not warned but ticketed and required to appear in court on February 21. On that morning, the prosecutor informed them that since the offense was a petty misdemeanor and could possibly result in jail time, they must meet with the public defender in April and re-appear in court in mid May, thus making a non-violent offender wait four months to resolve a minor infraction of a largely unenforced law. 

They were not lingering in the park, simply traversing it.

The degree of involvement this citation requires seems excessive: multiple court visits, a public defender and possible jail time (however unlikely)

The outward appearance is that it is far easier to catch a law-abiding citizen breaking an unpopular and arbitrarily enforced law than it is to curb the homeless and drug dealing issues happening in the exact same area.  

BUT...

The real issue is that Kailua is a dog-loving community. The great majority of dog owners are compliant, courteous and conscientious. A growing number of us want greater rights and access for our four legged family members. 

As one of the few walking towns on Oahu, Kailua needs to redefine the way it views well behaved dogs accompanied by their owners in public spaces. We should start with allowing dogs access to Kailua District Park.  The more public use of Kailua District Park, especially during non-sports-use hours, can only be a good thing to deter nefarious goings-on.  The dog-walking public is habitual by nature, often taking the same routes at similar times every day and could be an excellent contributor to the neighborhood watch in an area well-known to have issues with enforcement.

Kailua District Park is a natural crossing point for many who live and walk in Kailua. Barring dogs from accessing the park is like putting in a toy shop and not allowing kids to enter (even with an adult). It asks a lot to have those walking to and from our Kailua Town and the beach NOT to traverse the park...especially given that the sidewalks along much of the alternate routes are largely unimproved and now packed with tourists on bikes. Certainly you’ve seen the New York-Esque quality of Kailua Road these days.

Jeanne and her friend were crossing the park on the perimeter... walking, not lingering. Their dog is tame, leashed and under their control at all times.  A compromise for this draconian and antiquated ordinance is timely.  

This woman was doing nothing more than crossing a public greenspace.  Dismiss her citation and change the ordinance so we may all enjoy Kailua District Park and our Four-Legged-Friends can cross the park with us! 

Many of us will be at the Parks and Recreation meeting at Kailua District Park Arts and Crafts Room on March 15, 2018 at 7pm.  

The next Kailua Neighborhood Board meeting is April 5 at 7pm at the Kailua District Park Recreation Center.  

Please Sign this petition for Change and join us at the meetings!!



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