JustOneMorePet

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Stop California SB 250 – Save Our Dogs and Our Rights

I hate “the sky is falling, the sky is falling” as much as the next gal, but you know, when big hunks of blue stuff dotted with clouds are crashing into your head while you walk across the street, what are you gonna do?

So, Californians who think that medical decisions about your animals should be made by you and your veterinarian and not the good folks in Sacramento, please check out this action alert from Laura Sanborn of Save Our Dogs, who says that despite recent amendments, the core provisions of California’s SB 250 are unchanged — and very similar to the defeated mandatory spay/neuter bill, last year’s AB 1634:

Violate an animal control law even once and you may never be allowed to own an intact dog ever again. One violation and your intact licenses can be denied or revoked at any time, forever. No one can have intact dogs under those conditions. Suppose your county unknowingly hires a PETA member as head of animal control. In an effort to balance the budget, this person revokes and denies all intact licenses, including yours, generating millions of dollars in fines. He/She is fired six months later but it’s too late, your dogs have already been surgically sterilized. It’s not possible to reattach the parts even if they decide to give you back your licenses.

This will cost local jurisdictions money. Say you get a citation for some minor animal control infraction. No longer can you just pay the ticket.  You have to fight tooth and nail every step of the way to preserve your future right to own intact dogs. If you lose you either get out of dogs or leave the state. Instead of getting a check for $50 in the mail, the county will have to hold a hearing, and maybe an appeal hearing, go to court, etc. In the end the county will pay thousands in staff costs to collect one $50 fine. It’s only $50 to the county, but it is your life with your dogs to you so you’ll do whatever it takes.

The new fees for having intact licenses denied or revoked almost seem designed to drive dog owners underground. The state has a poor licensing compliance rate already, 10-30% compared to over 90% in Calgary. If you apply for a license and it is denied, you can be charged an additional fee for having the license denied. Maybe the local agency doesn’t charge such a fee now, but they may when it is time for renewal. Just one more thing to drive people away. And of course what will they do if you don’t pay the fee? Impound and kill your dogs, of course. You can’t even sell your dogs or give them away. You have to have a intact license to do that.

All these new fees and punishments will be enforced with the threat of impounding your dog. Any law that impounds owned dogs or increases the cost of redeeming impounded dogs will kill dogs. Most owned dogs that are forcibly impounded are ultimately killed. Taking dogs from their owners is usually a death sentence. Increasing the costs to redeem a dog, especially with an 11% statewide unemployment rate, will kill dogs. Before they are killed, the impounded dogs will sit in the shelter for the state mandated waiting period. The state is required by the existing Hayden Act reimbursement mandate to pay local governments for this cost. The state already pays over $20 million a year for this reimbursement. How many more fire fighters, police officers, teachers, and nurses will have to be laid off to cover the addition reimbursement the state will have to pay out if SB 250 passes?

We fail to see the point of this bill. There is no action that is currently legal that SB 250 makes illegal. All it appears to accomplish is give local animal control the power to forcibly spay/neuter as many dogs as possible. What it does do is make responsible pet owners afraid of their local animal control agency. This will reduce licensing compliance and licensing fee income. It will increase the cost of enforcement. Fewer dogs will be adopted because the public will avoid contact with the shelters. More dogs will be impounded. More dogs will be killed.

SB 250, The Pet Owner Punishment Act, just kills dogs and strips pet owners and people in general of another right.

This is a terrible and stupid law. It will not do what it claims to want to do, and it will worsen the lives of pet owners, cost money, and kill pets. Please follow these simple action steps and help stop SB 250. Act now!

UPDATE: Gina mentioned this in the comments, but I’m adding it here, too: Alley Cat Allies is urging Californians to contact their legislators to speak against SB 250, saying it will hurt stray, homeless, and feral cats. You can read their take on it, and use their action tool, here.

Source:  PetConnection.com

SB 250 – full Senate votes this week!

Posted:  Just One More Pet

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June 2, 2009 - Posted by | Animal Rescues, Just One More Pet, Pet Blog, Pet Owner's Rights, Pets, Political Change, Stop Euthenization | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

3 Comments »

  1. [...] Stop California SB 250 – Safe Our Dogs and Our Rights  [...]

    Pingback by California: Protest Governor’s Plan to Cut Shelter Funding! « JustOneMorePet | June 16, 2009 | Reply

  2. [...] Stop California SB 250 – Save Our Dogs and Our Rights [...]

    Pingback by Is Your Pet a Voiceless Victim of the Tanking Economy? « JustOneMorePet | August 21, 2009 | Reply


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