Doggie day care must wait
July 21, 2007
A doggie day care and kennel proposed near Coalville will have to wait after the Summit County Commission rejected the plan Wednesday.
More dogs on Chalk Creek Road wouldn’t get along with hundreds of sheep grazing nearby, critics of the project said, adding that the dogs would escape and bark too often.
"We have always been an agricultural community, and we would like to keep it like that," North Summit resident Jana Ross said.
After the Eastern Summit County Planning Commission refused to approve a permit for the project, the developer, North Summit resident Pam Rapplean, appealed to the County Commission.
"They denied this type of operation because it did not fit," North Summit resident Alf Blonquist, who is president of the Summit County Farm Bureau, said about the planning board’s decision.
Rapplean insisted that dogs would be kept inside a sound-insulated building at night.
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But quieting barking dogs and guaranteeing 30 dogs wouldn’t escape from the kennel isn’t possible, Summit County Commissioner Bob Richer said.
"There really are no conditions that would ensure health, safety and welfare," Richer said.
Commissioner Ken Woolstenhulme agreed.
"We have a group of people who deserve to be able to enjoy their surroundings," Woolstenhulme said before voting against Rapplean’s appeal.
Rapplean told Woolstenhulme she hasn’t purchased the property where she planned to build the kennel on Chalk Creek Road.
Meanwhile, ranchers said lots of sheep graze in that area of North Summit.
"I’m not against these people trying to set up a business, but I wonder if it’s in the right place," North Summit resident Earl Blonquist said in a hearing Wednesday in Coalville attended by about 25 people.
Rapplean refused to contact surrounding homeowners to discuss the project’s impacts, he said, adding that "they don’t give a damn what the neighbors think."
"I know dogs get out," sheep rancher Thomas Marsh said.
Rancher Ken Dawson added that "dogs love to chase baby lambs and they like to kill them."
Potential noise from barking dogs also concerned neighbors.
"You can be absolutely cruel to [dogs] and you will not stop the bark," Alf Blonquist said.
He complained that most dog owners in Coalville wouldn’t use the so-called Bark City Country Club Dog Daycare and Kennel.
"Who is this going to serve?" Alf Blonquist asked. "It is not for Chalk Creek residents."
Acknowledging the need for a kennel in Summit County, Summit County Commissioner Sally Elliott said, "I do believe it is in the wrong place."
Rapplean claimed she would screen dogs before housing loud pets.
"I know that the locals would use this facility," Rapplean said.
She suggested she could build a six-foot-tall electric fence to prevent dogs from escaping.
"I do want it to be safe, I do want to live in harmony," Rapplean said.