Concerns about unleashed dogs overshadowed possible improvements planned for Optimist Memorial Park at a public meeting Thursday night.

A $1.3-million upgrade is proposed for Optimist Park. It's money the parks department does not have at this point.

New pathways, an accessible playground, better lighting and tree planting are all part of the upgrades residents near the park suggested five years ago.

Major changes, however, won't be made due to council's promise to not raise taxes

Some of the 40 people in attendance were most concerned about dogs running free at the park, where they're supposed to be on a leash.

Coun. Alan Halberstadt represents the ward and was on hand.

"I'm going to try to get an enforcement plan together with the parks staff, with bylaw enforcement and the police, and maybe start to fine people and hand them tickets. I think it's been a little too passive in the past," he said of enforcement.

John Miceli, the executive director of parks, said there will be internal discussion on how to better enforce the bylaws.

"We'll look at how we can improve the parks system and managing dogs off leash," he promised.