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Ormond Beach Observer Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 6 years ago

Doggie Dining a go in Ormond?

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The City Commission also discussed an Environmental Learning Center and property ownership.

BY MATT MENCARINI | STAFF WRITER

They have a few concerns, but the Ormond Beach City Commission supported, in a Nov. 13 workshop, a proposed amendment allowing dogs to accompany their humans to dinner, at outdoor restaurants.

The issue will go to the planning board before it can be brought back to the commission as an ordinance.

The amendment would allow restaurants to apply for doggie dining permits, as long as the establishment has outdoor seating that customers can access without entering the building.

Even if the amendment passes, though, dogs will not be allowed inside restaurants.

Additionally, no restaurant would be forced to allow dogs, and all those wishing to add the feature would need be to be approved by the commission.

“I view this as something that’s business-friendly,” Commissioner Rick Boehm said. “It’s an opt-in by the businesses. ... Any patron who doesn’t like the idea doesn’t have to go there.”

Patrick Daugherty, who brought the idea to the City Commission’s attention Sept. 18, circulated a petition and got more than 100 signatures in support.

The commission has also received support letters from local restaurants, such as LuLu’s Oceanside Grill, Daytona Pig Stand and Einstein Bros Bagels.

Doggie dining permits could range from $50 to $100, but commissioners worried that price may be too low to balance the code enforcement necessary.

Any ordinance allowing dogs in restaurants would include several requirements. Dogs must be kept  leashed at all times; dogs aren’t allowed on chairs or tables; patrons must be advised to wash their hands before eating; and the establishment must provide waterless hand sanitizer at each table, among others restrictions.

It’s these regulations some commissioners felt may create a difficult, if not impossible, job for code enforcement.

Environmental Learning Center

Commissioners favor a design with more outdoor space and a walk-around porch for a proposed Environmental Learning Center. The center would include a classroom, central exhibit area, administrative office, public bathroom and observation deck, in addition to parking.

Budgeted at $400,000, with 50% of costs being covered by a county grant, the building design favored by the commission was estimated at $289,558.

Because of its proposed location in Central Park, along the north side of Division Avenue, however,  an additional $414,000 is estimated for parking and the extension of water and sewage lines. But exact costs will be discussed later, according to Commissioner Bill Partington. If they can’t be lowered, the project may be canceled.

This land is my land

City officials have been working with resident Paul Duncan to resolve a disagreement concerning ownership of lands involved in a project to interconnect lakes in Central Park.

The city met with Duncan several times and feels it has the legal authority to proceed with the project, although Duncan believes he owns the land involved in one of the project areas.

Grants will cover 75% of project costs, if bids are advertised this year.

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