BSL Rears its Ugly Head in MN
From an AKC Legislative Alert Wednesday, February 20, 2008:
Minnesota House File 3245, sponsored by Representative Dennis Ozment, seeks to lift the state’s current prohibition on breed-specific legislation. If passed and signed into law, the changes imposed by this bill would have a profound impact on all dog owners in Minnesota. It is imperative that all dog owners and breeders in Minnesota contact the members of the House Public Safety and Civil Justice Committee to express their opposition to the bill as currently written.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) supports reasonable, enforceable, non-discriminatory laws to govern the ownership of dogs. We support laws that: establish a fair process by which specific dogs are identified as “dangerous” based on stated, measurable actions; impose appropriate penalties on irresponsible owners; and establish a well-defined method for dealing with dogs proven to be dangerous. The AKC strongly opposes any legislation that determines a dog to be “dangerous” based on specific breeds or phenotypic classes of dogs. As currently worded, HF 3245 conflicts with AKC’s reasonable, non-discriminatory dangerous dog position. Specifically, it would:
* Establish a task force to study and recommend a uniform, statewide, mandatory system of dog owner and dog obedience education training according to commonly accepted standards and best practices for each breed or mixed breed of dog.
* Allow all statutory or home rule charter cities, or counties, to recommend to the task force specific breeds of dogs to be designated as dangerous or potentially dangerous based solely on the specific breed of dog.
For a copy of the bill, click here. WHAT YOU NEED TO DO:Contact the members of the Minnesota House Public Safety and Civil Justice Committee who will consider this bill. Let them know that, if passed as currently written, HF 3245 will result in unfair and discriminatory dangerous dog policy in Minnesota. For some EXCELLENT tips on how to write your letter please check out our friend Wallace the Pitbull’s website.
Find out who your legislator is and how to contact him/her here:
We strongly suggest that you take the time to write a letter and send it via the mail rather than to send an email. Many of these people receive hundreds of email posts a day and, frankly, email is a lot easier to ignore than a written letter is.
UPDATE: The bill was returned to its author on March 3, 2008. We’ll continue to monitor it’s status, but hope that it has gone to bed for good.