Manchester dog park leaders criticized by former member
Colleen Lange pets her dog Wrangler at a gathering of Manchester Dog Park Association members on Friday night at Bass Island in Manchester. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)
Hopwood also wrote a letter to the AG's Public Integrity and Economic Crime Unit, according to a recent column he posted on Yahoo.com.
The dog park, dubbed Peanut Park, is located on Bass Island off Second Street on the West Side. It opened a few years ago as the city's first off-leash dog park. It's a 10,000-square-foot patch of land owned by the city, which the MDPA is allowed to use under an agreement approved by the aldermen in 2010.
"You need to have an understanding that there's an election happening in a few weeks," Greazzo said. "We have a free dog park for Manchester. A few guys who are not even members are making these troubles."
The investigator, Christine Gauntt, said her office asked the MDPA to furnish more paperwork, but she said it appeared that the group was operating appropriately. "Not all nonprofits are required to register here as they are not charities. This looks like the case with the MDPA," Gauntt wrote in an email.
Greazzo and Simmons have indicated that they support the goal of getting federal nonprofit status as a 501(c)3. But Greazzo said given the complaints the MDPA has gotten from some, he would question the wisdom and expense of seeking tax-exempt status, which he would want to have lawyer handle. "What point is there in moving forward? We'll operate as we were. We'll have a voluntary membership that pays the insurance," he said.
Simmons said the organization was established based on certain principles. "I know it might seem odd to have a self-perpetuating board," she said. "I personally don't want to see people (joining the board) who think the solution is to seek money from the taxpayer."
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