Gehling: What can Apache Junction residents do about nuisance barking dogs?

Since 1986 I have been a resident of several municipalities here in the greater Phoenix area and have found an issue here in Apache Junction that begs for a better answer.

If one happens to reside in a neighborhood controlled by an HOA or an RV park that enforces rules on nuisance barking dogs, all is good.

However, in other neighborhoods where there are no rules or at least rules not enforced, apparently there is no city ordinance placing the enforcement responsibility on the city itself.

What I was told by one official was that it is up to the complaining person to file a civil action against the owner of the nuisance dog and when the action comes before the court, the plaintiff must have five additional witnesses to back up the complaint. How do you think that will work?

What I would request is for you to confirm what I was told about the current state of affairs regarding nuisance dogs, or if different, what the current rules actually are. My stance is that a city ordinance enforced by the city would better serve the populace.

Thank you in advance for your help and continued success as editor of our local newspaper.

Jerry Gehling
Apache Junction

Editor’s note: Thank you for the letter. The Apache Junction City Council on Dec. 4 approved City Code changes including allowing the city manager to convene a panel of city residents for a civil hearing in response to a citation regarding animal noise nuisance. Call the Apache Junction Paws and Claws Care Center at 480-983-4405.

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