Knoxville — Knoxville will soon have another amenity at Auld Park, a fenced-in dog park with areas for large and small dogs.
The Knoxville City Council approved the use of land behind the baseball field next to Douglas for the park, at the request of Kathy Arch of Knoxville and Eileen Mathias of Harvey. The two approached the Knoxville Parks Advisory Commission about the park recently.
"It's not being utilized for anything else right now," Parks Commissioner Dick Reed said. Public Works Director Jeff May and Street Superintendent Dennis Webb have been working on the project.
"It would bring more people in," Arch said. They have already sought cost information to build a fence. What the duo requested from the City is street light costs, the land and water use. Fund raisers are expected to be held to pay for the park and its maintenance.
Councilor Carolyn Formanek asked the duo what issues Des Moines has faced with its dog park.
"They really haven't had any particular problems," Arch said. Rules, such as not bringing food, ensuring that the dog is current on its shots, etc., will be posted at the park.
"I think a dog park is a great idea," City Manager Harold Stewart said. Logistics and costs of the park still need to be figured. Enforcement of rules and laws will be handled by the Knoxville Police Department.
"I think it sounds like a great amenity," Formanek added.
In other council business, Police Chief Dan Losada will soon begin to advertise for a new police officer. The position was created when the City was awarded a federal grant. Losada intends to move one of his senior officers into the role of school resource officer and the new hire, who must be a veteran, will take over as an officer. The City did not want to accept the federal grant, which requires a monetary match and a four-year commitment, without financial assistance. The Knoxville School District will pay half of the local costs, as a contribution to the school resource officer program.
The council also approved a memorandum of understanding with the Knoxville Veterans Alliance. This memo outlines the details of a tax-increment financing agreement the City intends to enter into with the KVA, as a way to promote the repopulation of the VA campus.
For a full report on the council, pick up a copy of the Aug. 24 Journal-Express.