HB 1639 (Dog Tethering Requirements & Unlawful Taking)
House Criminal Justice Committee Schedules Vote.
The House Criminal Justice Committee has scheduled HB 1639 for a committee vote on February 9th or 11th. This clearly indicates that there will not be a subcommittee convened to discuss the bill further. HB1639 adds a new section to the animal cruelty laws that sets specific requirements for dog tethering. It also amends RSA 644:8, IV-a(a), the animal cruelty statute, to allow an animal, suspected of being abused or neglected, to be taken into custody without a warrant.
NEXT ACTION STEPS
If you have not already sent a note to the members of the House Criminal Justice Committee, there are still a few days to remind them of the problems inherent in the bill and why it should be recommended “Inexpedient to Legislate” (Killed). It is also a good time to start contacting your local representative to inform them about the bill and the need to for it to be voted “Inexpedient to Legislate”. Your local legislator and their contact information can be found here.
STATUS UPDATE ON OTHER BILLS
HB 1624: Breeder restrictions. On February 10th, the House will vote on the committee recommendation of “Inexpedient to Legislate”. Representative Groen stated in his report in the House Record describing why the committee voted 12-1 for this recommendation, “This bill will place undue restrictions on breeders and dog owners alike. The rules that would be applied are very generic and not breed specific, thus, dog owners could be charged with cruelty to their pets. Cruelty laws are already in existence in RSA 644:8, making this legislation unnecessary. Local animal control and law enforcement have the authority to remedy any abuses that may arise.” It is unlikely that the committee recommendation will be overturned during the House floor vote and DOGS appreciates those who contacted their local representatives to help insure that the bill will be killed.
SB 365: Requires that animal shelters (including dog rescue shelters) cannot sell, give away, adopt, or otherwise transfer ownership of any dog or cat unless it has been sexually sterilized. DOGS requested an amendment to the bill that added essential protections for animals and animal owners such as; an exemption for health reasons and an animal reclaimed by its owner.
STATUS: The Senate Wildlife Committee is recommending the bill for passage with amendments (3-0 vote). DOGS’ requested amendments were incorporated into the Sponsor’s (Senator Roberge) amendment. The Senate will vote on the bill on February 10th.
HB 1417: allowing companion dogs in certain areas of restaurants. DOGS supports the intent of this bill. The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Butler, owns an Inn and the health inspector maintains that the owner’s dogs having access to the dining room is a violation of the state regulations. DOGS is supporting the bill.
STATUS: The bill is pending before the House Commerce Committee.
HB 1612; restriction of the use and sale of carisoprodol, tramadol hydrochloride, and temazepam. DOGS opposed this bill as it could have interfered with veterinarians prescribing medications for pets.
STATUS: Killed in the House.
HB 1562: Providing for visible tags for “assistance dogs”. DOGS opposed the bill as it would have interfered with federal laws and regulations.
STATUS: Killed in the House.
HB 1525: Allowing appropriately trained physical therapists to practice on animals. The bill adds language to the statute passed last year that is agreeable to the therapists and the NH veterinarian’s association. DOGS supports the bill.
STATUS: Passed the House.
HB 1326: relative to the use of long-term antibiotics for the treatment of Lyme disease in humans. DOGS supported the bill.
STATUS: House Health & Human Services recommended the bill go to interim study as there was conflicting testimony regarding treatment guidelines.
HB 1596: Changes the time period by 15 days during which dog owners who have failed to license their dogs shall be notified of the civil forfeiture of each unlicensed dog and increases the warrant fee from $5 to $10. The bill was requested by the municipal clerks’ organization.
STATUS: The House Municipal Committee will make a recommendation on the bill.