Dog Control Meeting Gets Heated

By Erika Mahoney

September 14, 2012 Updated Sep 14, 2012 at 10:53 AM EDT

Town of Lisle, NY (WBNG Binghamton) After recent controversy and a heated three hour public board meeting, Town of Lisle leaders come to a transparent decision over dog control, at least until the next public meeting.

Town Supervisor, Edward Gehm, said Thursday night the town will extend the number of days they keep a dog in the shelter.

"We had complaints of something we thought we had taken care of," said Gehm. "But evidently everyone didn't know that we had come to an interim agreement that we are not going to euthanize dogs. We are going to keep them for seven days and then we are going to allow them to be adopted outside of the town, which is the least expensive."

Earlier this summer, residents grew furious with Dog Control Officer, Tammy Swarts, when three dogs were euthanized.

Under law, residents had five days to claim their lost pets.

But several residents said she was and still is impossible to get a hold of.

Since then, volunteer dog rescuers said they have collected 1,066 signatures in support of changing that policy.

And while they said they feel like they made progress tonight, more still needs to be done.

"I think we have made huge strides with the town board, however, you have to have the individual who is paid by the town board on board," said Shannon Happes. "And she is not. Her and the deputy dog control officer just do not want to hold dogs."

"We are still back where the dog control officer, who makes really poor decisions, is still in control," Roxanne Randall. "And she doesn't want to work with any of us."

Action News reached out to Tammy Swarts, but she said she is following the advice of the town attorney and not speaking.

Meanwhile, the town board urges residents to license their dogs.

A public hearing on the issue is schedule for Oct. 11 at 7:30 p.m.