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Sharon Voters Deciding Proposed Beach Dog Ban Tonight

The issue is on the annual town meeting warrant.

Tales might be told after a vote at tonight.

is expected to be among the most hotly debated topics at the annual and special town meetings, which start at 7 p.m. in the school auditorium.

The annual town meeting warrant includes 24 articles. The special town meeting warrant has four.

Sharon Patch has set up a topic page devoted to town meeting.

The lake management study committee proposes banning dogs from the Beach Street beach and park. Dog droppings are polluting Lake Massapoag, the committee says. Police would fine violators $25 for the first offense, $50 for the second offense, and $100 for the third and subsequent offenses. Service dogs and dogs receiving a permit from the board of selectmen would be allowed.

Five town boards are backing the ban: the lake management study committee, conservation commission, recreation advisory committee, board of health and finance committee.

Selectmen oppose it. Sharon has not studied the lake pollution issue to determine the degree that dogs, and geese, are contributing to it, selectmen say.

Meanwhile, another annual town meeting proposal may get amended on town meeting floor.

Selectmen propose filing a home rule petition with the Legislature to allow Sharon to issue four among three areas: Shaw's Plaza, Sharon Commons and Route 1.

The owners of and want their zoning districts included, citing competition. They've worked on an amendment with Sharon's town counsel. Selectmen and the finance committee are expected to take positions on that amendment tonight, shortly before town meeting.

Among the other proposals on the annual warrant are:

  • To file a home rule petition allowing Sharon to reduce its seating requirement for establishments to sell alcohol for consumption there, from 50 seats to 18 seats. The move would affect , , and the new .
  • To to require dealers of old metals, jewelry and other second-hand goods to file electronic photos and reports on the items with police.
  • allowing residents over age 60 to volunteer for town departments to reduce their tax bills. The change would allow disabled residents to have a proxy volunteer for them.
  • for municipal purposes, most notably expanding the buffer zone for Sharon Well 6.

The , meanwhile, has four articles, all involving bookkeeping and related issues, Finance Director William Fowler says.

Paul Lauenstein May 07, 2012 at 12:35 PM
Sharon is lucky to have a beautiful, clear lake for recreational and aesthetic enjoyment of all. Sharon is also lucky to have a dedicated volunteer Lake Management Study Committee. In the 1980's the lake was plagued by smelly algae and fish kills. Now it is much clearer and cleaner, thanks to the actions of the Lake Committee. We should respect their judgement if we want a clean lake.
philip May 07, 2012 at 12:53 PM
DOG BAN IS WRONG AND HURTS OUR PETS WITHOUT ANY PROOF ! I WILL VOTE NO DOG BAN TONIGHT !
JERRY May 07, 2012 at 04:12 PM
I WALK DOG THROUGH MEMORIAL BEACH EVERY DAY ! !DO NOT STOP ME OR PLEASE BOARD OF SELECTMEN GIVE ME A PASS !I LOVE SHARON AND ALWAYS PICK UP AFTER RUFUS .
jackie semel May 07, 2012 at 05:17 PM
stand up and keep Sharon a wonderful town . I AM VOTING AGAINST DOG BAN !
philip May 08, 2012 at 02:06 AM
Thanks Selectmen for standing up for the dogs of Sharon ! We live in wonderful town !

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