Dog owners get what they pay for.
As part of the debate over where in the Scenic Reserve dogs should be allowed on and off the lead, several dog owners have claimed they are not getting value for money when it comes to their dog registration fee.
"We pay a lot in dog registration and yet we are restricted in where we can take them. Why doesn't the council provide dedicated dog parks? There are plenty of places we could have one and then there is no confusion," one dog owner commented on the Herald's website.
Another reader, a regular visitor from Christchurch, sympathised with Timaru dog owners who did not have access to dog parks as they did in Christchurch.
Dog control is meant to be self-funding and break even, the Timaru District Council's planning and regulation manager Peter Thompson said.
Historically the council's dog control services have run at a loss, although they did make a slight profit last year, and are expected to have a surplus of $27,500 this financial year. In 2009-10 dog control ran at a loss of more than $115,000 while last year it was in the black by $25,800.
Dog control's budget for the year is just over $423,000, of which $280,000 is staff costs and $148,500 corporate overheads.
Dogs should have been registered by July 1, and so far 9560 dogs, or 99 per cent of the known dogs in the district, were registered, which was the highest compliance rate the council had ever achieved, environmental services manager Rick Catchpowle said. MORE>>