Washtenaw County officials hope an ordinance approved last night will decrease the number of unlicensed dogs in the county. The changes will go into place later this year after an outreach effort.
The county will now be able to charge civil infractions with a $50 fine for unlicensed dogs instead of having to charge a misdemeanor. A second offense would bring a $100 fine, and subsequent offenses would be $500. The county hasn't focused much on enforcement to date because they only could charge someone with a misdemeanor.
The cost of a license is also being cut in half to $6 a year for dogs that have been spayed or neutered. Licenses for dogs that haven't been fixed will be $12.
Chair of the County Commissioners Yousef Rabhi says the changes should lower the costs of animal control. He believes it will help people and dogs, because the county will know more quickly what shots dogs have had and be able to find owners more rapidly.
The County Commissioners also gave final approval to a new Property Assessed Clean Energy program. No county funds will be used for the PACE program that helps businesses make energy efficient upgrades.
— Andrew Cluley is the Ann Arbor beat reporter, and anchor for 89.1 WEMU News. Contact him at 734.487.3363 or email him firstname.lastname@example.org.