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updated: 9/7/2012 2:10 PM

No more dog registration fee in Lombard

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Dog owners of Lombard now have one less yearly fee to pay.

The village board on Thursday night voted to remove the $5 annual dog registration fee and move to an online system of canine registration.

Trustee Laura Fitzpatrick said her environmental concerns committee began evaluating the dog tag program and found it to be ineffective.

Based on census figures estimating the number of dogs per household, Lombard has a dog population of 11,000. But only 828 tags, representing 7.5 percent of dogs estimated to be living in town, were issued in the last registration year, according to a memo from Assistant Public Works Director Dave Gorman.

Fitzpatrick said it would be more efficient to allow residents to purchase a dog tag at a pet store and register their pet on the village's website, providing information such as their name, address and phone number, and their pet's name, breed, age, vaccination and veterinarian information.

Online registration will be free, resulting in a loss of $4,410 in revenue to the village, according to Gorman's memo.

The goal of the new system is to register more dogs and improve resident service. It's an update to a part of the Lombard Village Code enacted in 1931 to enforce rabies vaccinations and identify lost dogs for quick return to their owners.

Fitzpatrick said the village will run an education program in May, which is National Pet Month, to encourage residents to register their dog and buy an identification tag from a pet store. Notices on water bills and in the Lombard Pride newsletter also will inform residents of the new policy.

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