Dubuque City Council adds 3 parks to approved sledding list - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dubuque City Council adds 3 parks to approved sledding list

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DUBUQUE (KWWL) -

The Dubuque City Council voted 7-0 last night to add three more parks to it's approved sledding list.

Valentine, Usha and Gay Parks are now okay to sled at.

For Shawn Schaefer, the addition of those parks is great news.  Valentine Park is basically Schaefer's backyard.  She has two children who love to go sledding there.

"It's awesome to have it back," she said. 

Her 11-year-old daughter Marlene was especially excited.  "I feel like I can go back out and play during the winter," she said.

City Council member Kevin Lynch said they looked at a number of criteria when deciding which, if any, parks they could add to the approved list.

"Steepness of the hill, and then if there was enough time to get stopped before sliding out into traffic," are two of them, he said.  "They also looked at are there any obstacles in the way, any tree stumps any signposts, anything like that that people could accidentally hit and get hurt."

The location of the three parks are much more spread out than the first two, giving more people in Dubuque closer access to approved sledding parks.

But if Lynch and the City Council get their way with the Iowa Legislature, this could soon be a moot point.

The way Iowa tort law is written, the city isn't liable for activities like skateboarding, but can be sued for sledding.  But thanks to national and even international attention drawn to this story, Lynch is confident lawmakers will move quickly to change the law.

"Hopefully before the end of the legislative session, the folks down in Des Moines make sure everything goes away. And I would be happy to vote along with my colleagues to rescind our ordinance at that time."

Lynch added the city will continue to look for parks that can be added to the approved list.

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