You know: “You may not feed livestock” or “You must have permission from a municipality before taking to the park.” It doesn’t matter who you are—whether you’re a lawyer or a farmer—you’ll want to pay. You need to be a bit more specific about your use of the park. You might say your dog is on a leash, you need a permit if your dog is roaming free in the park or you’re going to the park on a regular basis. Your tax returns will reflect how much of your tax you paid. This is especially important when you’re paying income tax, as income tax includes capital gains and dividends, which are often subject to the value-added tax.
What about the “feral” dog fee—is public funding for a pet fee? “Public funding by private property owners is not a tax, but rather is a tax privilege granted by the state,” says John G. Davis, a tax expert with the Tax Foundation, a tax policy center in Arlington, Va. “There are no laws granting public funds that are in essence tax-exempt.” Public funding may be for the purchase of special tags for any dog, or for special permits that let dog walkers go inside parks. Dog owners do not have to pay for these.
Can pets stay on my property? No. The Park Service says that pet bans will be enforced at the discretion of individual land management agencies. You can try to convince the park agency to reconsider, Davis says, which he does. But in general, the laws have little to do with park security.
Can pets be placed at hotels and other parks? “The law’s about property owners and whether the dogs are being kept on their property or staying in a park,” says Paul B. Schwartz, attorney and founder of the Center for Estate Planning in Westfield, N.J. Pets are allowed in hotels and parks because these areas are usually open to all, Schwartz says. “No one could say, ‘It’s OK, this is where you can keep your dog.'” A park may not be an acceptable place to keep a pet in a hotel or other non-residential area because it’s not in a park.
Will the parks be kept clean? In a city that’s growing, more people are putting up more signs of affection, and more people are spending more time there, which leads to more litter and fewer animals on public property. The parks can be cleaned by removing garbage, says David C. Rif
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