Law that targets barking dogs is enacted on Garden Island
Kauai Mayor Bernard Carvalho has signed into law a new barking dog ordinance, which replaces a similar law repealed last year. The new law took effect Friday.
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Kauai Mayor Bernard Carvalho has signed into law a new barking dog ordinance, which replaces a similar law repealed last year.
The new law took effect Friday.
The Kauai County Council approved the measure Jan. 13 with a 5-2 vote. Councilman KipuKai Kualii introduced Bill 2604 in November, three months after the Council repealed the previous barking dog law. Some Council members had contended it violated due process rights by allowing the issuance of a citation to a dog owner without verification of allegations.
Under the new law, a citation can be issued only if an enforcement officer of the Kauai Humane Society observes incessant dog barking. The law does not pertain to dogs barking at passers-by or tresspassers, or to dogs that are provoked.
The humane society will issue the dog owner a warning notice concerning the complaint and provide an educational packet on methods to train the dog to be quiet. The owner will have up to 10 days to remedy the nuisance or refute the claim.
The new law offers an alternative for resolving a dispute, which involves the dog owner agreeing to participate in mediation. If the owner fails to follow through, a $35 citation may be issued. Fines could increase up to $300 for multiple violations.
The new law applies to any dog that “barks, bays, cries or howls intermittently” for 30 minutes within a 45-minute period or incessantly for 15 minutes.
Councilmen Ross Kagawa and Arryl Kaneshiro voted against the measure, maintaining nuisance disputes can be addressed with a civil lawsuit.
Kaneshiro said that while he sees the new law as better than the previous law, it’s still unnecessary. If two neighbors have a conflict, they can take the matter to court, said Kaneshiro at the Jan. 13 County Council meeting. “Having the bill would cost us more money.”
The cost for the humane society to hire an enforcement officer to respond to complaints is estimated at $18,000 a year.
At the meeting, Councilwoman JoAnn Yukimura said not all residents can afford to take a dispute to court. Without a barking dog law, “they would have no recourse,” she said.