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PRK-3.09 - Leash/Scoop Compliance Program Policy & Procedures

Administrative Rules Adopted by Bureaus Pursuant to Rule Making Authority (ARB)
Policy category
Policy number


Administrative Rule Adopted by Portland Parks & Recreation Pursuant to Rule-Making Authority


What follows is the Table of Contents and an excerpt from the administrative rules:

Table of Contents

Executive Summary


•  Scope and Authority

•  Hours of Operation

•  Roles and Responsibilities

Section 1: Approach--Education/Enforcement Process

•  General Approach

•  General Park Approach Chart

•  Focused Approach on Low-Compliance Parks

•  Methodology to determine Low-Compliance Parks

•  Low-Compliance Outreach & Education

•  Patrols

•  Focused Approach Chart

Section 2: Administrative Process

•  Schedule of Citation Fines

•  Documentation of Violations

Section 3: Appeals Process

•  Administrative Review

•  Code Hearings

•  Appeal Process Chart

•  Data Tracking

Section 4: Collection Process

•  Administrative Collection Rules


•  Appendix A: Definitions

•  Appendix B: Basic Ranger Dog Talking Points

•  Appendix C: Citation Form

•  Appendix D: BLAST Education & Outreach Model


In April 2013, Portland City Council amended City Code Title 20.12.140 Animals to allow Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) to issue civil penalties for violation of leash and scoop regulations.

The amendment further authorized the Commissioner in Charge to adopt policies and procedures for implementation of civil penalties. This document outlines the processes and procedures used in administering the Leash/Scoop Compliance Program, including program scope and authority, staff roles and responsibilities, education/enforcement process, administrative process, and appeals process.


Portland’s parks, natural areas and trails are extensively used for all types of recreation, and off-leash dogs and dog waste have significant impacts on the health, safety, and usability of park lands. To keep parks enjoyable for all visitors, PP&R’s Leash/Scoop Compliance Program works to increase Leash/Scoop law compliance through education, enforcement, and providing off-leash areas (OLAs) for dog-owner recreation.


Leash/Scoop Compliance Program processes and procedures apply to all properties owned or managed by PP&R, and all lands for which Park Rangers have enforcement authority under City Code.

The authority for PP&R to issue citations is outlined in City Code 20.12.140 Animals, Section L which states:

Notwithstanding any other provision of this Code, any person violating Subsections 20.12.120 B., E., F. or H. is subject only to a civil penalty not to exceed $150 for each violation. Any person assessed a civil penalty under this Subsection may appeal the citation to the Code Hearings Officer in accordance with the provisions of Title 22 of city code.

As outlined in city code, Park Rangers are able to issue citations for the following subsections in 20.12.140 Animals:

Section B: No person owning, in control of or responsible for any dog shall allow that dog to be in any Park if the dog is not held securely on a leash no greater than eight feet in length, except in such Parks or portions of Parks as the Director may designate as Off-Leash areas, or during such times as the Director may establish as Off-Leash hours; provided, however, that a violation of any rule established by the Director governing any designated Off-Leash area or Off-Leash hours shall be a violation of this section. Nothing in this Section shall limit the authority of the Director to terminate, alter or amend the designation of any Off-Leash area or Off-Leash hours.

Section E: No person shall bring or keep any animal in any Park if the animal is not within the person’s immediate reach and control.

Section F: No person owning, in control of or responsible for any animal shall allow that animal to enter or remain upon any of the following in any park:

1. Any lake, fountain, pond or stream.

2. Any tennis court, basketball court, running track or other artificial sports

surface or manicured turf sports field.

3. Any sports facility enclosed by a fence or wall.

4. Any area where such animals are prohibited by the Director.

Section H: No person shall allow any animal in the person’s possession, custody or control to discharge any fecal material in any Park unless the person promptly removes and disposes of the fecal material in an appropriate receptacle. No person shall allow any animal in the person’s possession, custody or control to enter or remain in any Park unless the person has in the person’s possession the equipment necessary to remove and properly dispose of any fecal material deposited by the animal in the Park.

The prohibitions outlined in 201.12.140 do not apply to service animals while performing their qualifying services, nor to animals while in the course of the official performance of police or rescue activities. Park Rangers and Park Officers follow the guidelines identified by the ADA.


Generally, Leash/Scoop Compliance Program efforts occur during park operating hours, most commonly 5 a.m. – 12:01 a.m. All administrative functions occur 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.


Off-Leash Program Coordinator (OLC) – The Dog Off-Leash Program Coordinator (OLC) provides strategic direction to Dog Off-Leash Administrator and Outreach Staff. The OLC serves on the internal coordination team and co-supervises the Dog Off-Leash Enforcement Administrator. The OLC manages PP&R’s broader dog off-leash program, which includes oversight of off-leash areas, outreach and education, communications, and community partnerships. The OLC will receive reports from the Dog Off-Leash Enforcement Administrator and monitor progress of Leash/Scoop Compliance program.

Off-Leash Enforcement Administrator (OLEA) - The Dog Off-Leash Enforcement Administrator (OLEA) monitors, tracks and coordinates the Leash/Scoop Compliance program activity in coordination with Park Rangers. The OLEA serves as the repository for all citations and provides quality assurance by reviewing all citations to ensure their accuracy and completeness. The OLEA will also track the citation through the entire process (from citation issuance to final payment of fines).

The OLEA along with Park Security Manager (PSM) presides over the Administrative Reviews and makes joint decisions on all reviews.

The OLEA implements outreach plans in low-compliance parks, before the Leash/Scoop Compliance Ranger Team begins zero-warning patrols. The OLEA works closely with Leash/Scoop Compliance Ranger Team to assess the effectiveness and impact of enforcement efforts. OLEA will report monthly to Parks Security Manager, Park Ranger Supervisor and Dog Off-Leash Program Coordinator the results and progress of the Leash/Scoop Compliance Program.

Park Security Manager (PSM) – The Park Security Manager leads strategic direction of the Leash/Scoop Compliance Program and co-supervises the OLEA. The Park Security Manager provides oversight of Park Rangers and Park Ranger Supervisor, receiving reports from PRS on performance of Park Rangers. The PSM along with OLEA presides over the Administrative Reviews and makes joint decisions on all reviews. The PSM leads the internal coordination team.

Park Ranger Supervisor (PRS) – The Park Ranger Supervisor provides day-to-day supervision of the Park Rangers and monitors their performance through Ranger Daily Activity Reports (DAR). The PRS serves on the internal coordination team. The PRS in conjunction with OLEA assigns Rangers to low-compliance parks. Additionally, the PRS coordinates with the OLEA to determine if strategies being used are successful and develop strategies to better deploy Ranger resources to gain voluntary compliance.

Park Rangers – Park Rangers provide day-to-day patrols in parks on a detail assigned by PRS. Park Rangers are an ambassador to the public in parks while educating park users on the rules to provide a safe, healthy, and usable environment for all park users. Park Rangers on day-to-day patrols will issue warnings, exclusions, and citations for rule violations in parks.

Leash/Scoop Compliance Rangers – These Park Rangers focus on parks with low leash/scoop compliance rates as designated by the PSM, PRS, and OLEA. Rangers issue citations in designate parks for any violation of 20.12.140 during their patrols. Rangers report their activities to PRS in the DAR and provide the OLEA with copies of all citations issued and reports on these contacts.


Adopted by Director of Portland Parks & Recreation September 30, 2013 and Commissioner in Charge October 2, 2013.

Filed for inclusion in PPD December 5, 2013.

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