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Date of Issue: March 19, 2008

Dogs, bikes, dock topics in Bradenton Beach

Dogs and bikes were hot topics in Bradenton Beach last week.

Actually, dogs have been an issue for at least a decade in the city. With more and more people acquiring canine friends, more and more concern has been voiced about canine … er, detritus. Some pet owners are responsible and clean up after their furry buddies. Others do not, causing some complaints. The city even posted cute little signs warning of the dangers of not picking up the doggie doo, apparently to no avail.

Further questions arose recently with the completion of the Coquina Beach Trail along the Gulf of Mexico in southern Bradenton Beach. Ordinances allow dogs in the parking lots but not on the beach. Is the path part of the beach or part of the parking lot? What rules apply?

The matter remains in limbo.

Then dogs came to the forefront regarding the Historic Bridge Street Pier. Can Fido go for a walk down the pier at the east end of Bridge Street?

Nope, city commissioners concluded.

What about bicycles on the pier?

“Historically, we had people from the Pines Trailer Park who rode their three-wheel bikes down the pier,” Police Chief Sam Speciale said, adding that he wanted direction from the city commission on the matter because “with the pier open, it’s packed out there.”

Commissioners decided that for those with an American with Disabilities Act sticker on their bike, it would not be a problem. Otherwise, bikers are restricted from the pier proper.

Speciale said he would draft language for signage.

In other business, commissioners directed staff to draft a request for proposals to replace the “dingy dock” immediately south of the pier off Bay Drive South. The dock is envisioned to accommodate the small boats that will be used to transport boaters to shore from the eventual mooring field by the pier.

Previous bids for the dock replacement were pegged at about $28,000, which included a floating structure for easy ingress and egress.