Pet owners who fail to clean up after their animals are in the doghouse in Santa Monica.
Councilwoman Christine E. Reed, worried that pets are contributing to fecal coliform contamination of the waters of Santa Monica Bay, will ask the City Council on Tuesday to adopt a stricter "pooper scooper" law. "I want people to clean up everywhere," said Reed, who noted that waste materials are washed from city streets into the storm drains and, ultimately, into Santa Monica Bay.
"If you don't clean up after your dog today, you're going to swim in it next week," Reed warned.
Fecal coliform contamination can cause health problems in humans, especially children, she said.
Reed proposed the new law earlier this year and the concept was approved unanimously by the council.
If adopted Tuesday, the ordinance will require owners to clean up their pets' droppings on city streets, as well as on private property, public parks and sidewalks as is already required, she said.
Owners will be notified of the new regulations when they register their dogs, and when they obtain pets from animal shelters, she said. Violators will be subject to a $25 fine.
The only place pets will be able to use freely, without city restrictions, will be "their own back yards," Reed said.