Wooden gavel in front of an open law book

During its first meeting of the New Year, Peoria City Council voted to prohibit “free-range dogs” in the city.

According to new language in the city code, “No dog shall be permitted at large. Each dog shall be confined within an enclosure on the owner’s or custodian’s property, secured so that the dog is confined entirely to the owner’s or custodian’s property, or on a leash not to exceed 6 feet in length and directly under the owner’s or custodian’s control when not on the owner’s or custodian’s property.” 

As dogs are generally believed to be illiterate, their owners are responsible for maintaining the law.

Fines and/or impoundment may be imposed for violations.

The Ironwood District’s Bill Patena, Mesquite District representative Bridget Binsbacher and Willow District representative Jon Edwards, the three council members Peoria voters reelected in November, were formally sworn in at the Jan. 5 meeting. 

With the city in relatively strong financial shape, council approved a midyear budget amendment of $590,000 to restore previous requests delayed by the coronavirus pandemic.

According to agenda information, “Since the spring, reviews of our economic activity have improved, with a reasonable recovery in such areas as our critical city’s sales tax revenue.”

As such, council approved a new Development and Engineering Department contract position, an administrative assistant for the Peoria Fire-Medical Department, a Peoria Police Department $70,000 request for overtime in its traffic and crime prevention programs and a $350,000 request by the Finance and Budget Department for “needed updates to its outdated budgeting application.”