Willard Beach Dog Ban Referendum (2009)
The Willard Beach Dog Ban Referendum appeared on the November 3, 2009 ballot in Cumberland County for voters in the City of South Portland. The measure was defeated. Had it been enacted, the measure would ban dogs from Willard Beach between the dates of April 15-October 15. During the other months, dogs would only be allowed if they were on a leash.
The city council sent the referendum to the November ballot after a group named Save Willard Beach, headed by City Council candidate Gary Crosby, collected about 1,000 signatures from city registered voteres. The city council then decided to leave the decision to voters instead of passing a motion.
Save Willard Beach circulated the petition due to health concerns. On their official website, they stated that "allowing dogs to walk on, urinate on and defecate on a public beach in the summer time is a health hazard to all citizens and especially the elderly, infirmed and our children and grandchildren."
The measure was defeated.
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