Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Dog Park Activist from Sandy Springs Wants to Dictate Policy in Dunwoody

An interesting article/letter over at the Patch website.  It's a letter written to Dunwoody's mayor and council.  The author is Alison Harris, an activist and resident of Sandy Springs.

Here's an article over at The sandy Springs Reporter quoting Activist Alison Harris.  Here's a quote from Alison, lecturing Sandy Springs council on a proposal to lure a technical college to the COSS.

“I felt compelled to come here tonight to ask you to be less concerned with your personal agendas and your desire for political expediency and to stop turning a deaf ear to the voices of the taxpayers for whom you work. Before you pursue this rushed, ill-advised wooing of Gwinnett Tech with my money, you must perform the proper due diligence on this specific project and make that information available to those of us who foot the bills.”

Alison seems to very passionate about dog parks.  Here is an article going back to 2007 and a discussion on dog parks in Sandy Springs.

Here is the letter (from Patch)

Dear Mayor and Dunwoody City Council members, 

I spend hundreds of dollars every year in Dunwoody as I travel to and from the dog park

I buy gas, coffee, fast food, groceries and much more from Dunwoody merchants --- even though I live and pay taxes in Sandy Springs. And I've talked to scores of dog park visitors who are just like me. 
Some of you have made it known that you feel non-residents using the Dunwoody dog park should be discouraged. If you close the excellent dog park so many now enjoy, I can guarantee that my travels through Dunwoody - and my frequent patronage of the city's businesses - will cease.  

Brook Run Dog Park is widely considered the best dog park in metro Atlanta and attracts hundreds of visitors to the City of Dunwoody every month. Please consider the fact that non-taxpayers are valuable consumers who will go elsewhere if the large, shady dog park we love closes.

Respectfully, Alison Harris

First, thank you Alison for buying coffee, gas, fast food, groceries, and much more in Dunwoody.  Those pennies really add up.  But that gas tax really doesn't do us much good here in da 'wood; it goes to the State then we have to beg for it or heaven forbid, apply for a grant to get your pennies back in the form of asphalt.  The grocery tax doesn't do much good for us either.  Of course the fast food workers you help employ thank you.  But many of our fast food workers probably live in Sandy Springs or Chamblee, so that doesn't really help us.  

Unless you have a bike with a basket like that girl who was swept off to Oz, you are driving through Dunwoody to get from Sandy Springs to the dog park.  Our Red Shirts may resent you for driving on Mt Vernon Road as that road is reserved for bikes and only those elderly residents living in log cabins, and those residing along the crucial  intersections.

In reading your statement made to your own city council regarding G-Tech, it seems to mirror my opinion on the dog park.  As one who partially 'foots the bill' for the dog park you so enjoy, I hope my mayor and council will ' perform the proper due diligence on this specific project'.  I ask of you " to be less concerned with your personal agendas" here in Dunwoody regarding the Dunwoody park.

Many of us here in Dunwoody envy you and your neighbors over in Sandy Springs.  You have many great baseball fields, softball fields, great playgrounds, a synthetic turf field at Hammond, basketball courts, a gymnastics center, etc.  Your city inherited a decent park system and your mayor and council used great wisdom in building amenities for the active adults and the youth of Sandy Springs.  Your parks are packed with kids and adults having fun outdoors.  You (Sandy Springs) and Brookhaven have what many here want.  We drive our children (sorry about that Mt Vernon reference, I guess the road goes both ways) to Sandy Springs five days a week for sports.  Of course we pay to play in Sandy Springs.  

And what do you want to jam down our throats?  A dog park.  Really?  Why no advocate for a better dog park in Sandy Springs?  Why not advocate for Dunwoody to build its own sports fields?  

The truth is many here in Dunwoody don't like the fact that we are spending money on a dog park (to attract you and hundreds of others from metro Atlanta) while our children are neglected.  Sure, we get a drizzle of water through the fake creek at Brook Run for Food Truck Thursdays and new surveillance cameras at Brook Run, but no talk of much else.  Alsion, consider yourself lucky to live in a city that has spent some money for active adults and children.  I'm sorry if the Sandy Springs dog park does not meet your standards, but please allow us to reserve the limited green space we have for something better than a dog park full of canine pee and poop.

Sorry if this seems harsh.  It's just that we have exceeded our limit here in Dunwoody for activists telling us how to spend/not spend our money. 


Anonymous said...

Maybe this is our payback for all the lecturing they get from Dunwoody resident Joe Seconder about bike paths.

Anonymous said...

I am a frequent (practically daily) user of the dog park at Brook Run and a Dunwoody resident. The dog park has been in its current location since January 2006. Dunwoody wasn't even a "city" at the time. It’s certainly not reasonable to do away with a dog park that hundreds of Dunwoody residents have used faithfully for many years. People without dogs frequently have the mistaken idea that a dog park is a park for dogs. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. It’s a park where people who love their dogs can bring them to socialize with other people and other dogs. The dog park is not full of dog poo because the park has a loyal volunteer group that cleans it every day, as well as most patrons cleaning up after their own dogs. Dunwoody hasn’t really put much money into the dog park at all as it has not received the maintenance that a public park requires. The city wants to move the park to another location which would actually cost more than leaving it where it is. Even though I am not able to have children, I am not opposed to the existence of ball fields. The land that the dog park occupies is not appropriate for use as a ball field as it sits on a slope. I agree with you that the city should use the money that they have budgeted to move the dog park in a different way, perhaps put the money towards ball fields. There’s close to 100 more acres in Brook Run.