Agriculture & Animal Law
HB 442 – Crimes against service animals. Adds professional therapy dog to the
definition of “service dog” as it relates to crimes against these animals or
crimes of impersonating a disabled person.
HB 517 / SCS SB 33 – Rights of individuals with service animals. Adds an individual with mental
disabilities to the list of people who must be afforded the same rights as
those without disabilities in public places and the right to be accompanied by
a service dog.
HB 667 – Department of Agriculture. Changes the Department of Agriculture to the Office of
Agriculture with all of the same powers, functions, and duties as the current
department contingent upon passage of a constitutional amendment.
HB 707 – Crimes against service animals. Changes the laws regarding the crime
of causing injury to or the death of a service dog. In addition to other provisions
amending the elements of crimes relating to harassment, injury or death of a
service dog, this legislation specifies that any person convicted of violating
the criminal provisions must make full restitution for all damages that arise
out of or are related to the offense.
HB 785 – Confiscation of animals. Changes the laws regarding the
confiscation of animals. In addition to other provisions, this legislation
states that no animal shall be sterilized prior to the completion of a
disposition hearing unless necessary to save life or relieve suffering; states
that the owner of any impounded animal shall not be responsible for the
animal’s care and keeping prior to a disposition hearing if the court
determines that the animal was taken unlawfully; states that any facility holding the animal
after impoundment shall be liable to the owner for damages for any negligent
acts or abuse of the animal which occurs while the animal is being held; allows
an owner to demand return of the animal held in custody if the owner posts
sufficient bond and is acquitted or if there is a final discharge without
conviction, unless there is a settlement, consent judgment, or suspended
imposition of sentence.
HB 834 – Definition of service dogs. Revises the definition of service dog to
include animals that provide support or therapeutic functions for individuals
with psychiatric or mental disabilities.
HJR 29 – Department of Agriculture. Proposes a constitutional amendment
establishing the elected office of the Secretary of Agriculture and eliminates
the Department of Agriculture as an executive department.
SB 98 –Animal shelters. Modifies provisions relating to animal
shelters. Among other provisions, this legislation exempts an animal shelter
from the payment of any licensing or other fees under the provisions of the
Animal Care Facilities Act and reduces the maximum amount a commercial breeder
may be charged for a license from $2,500 to $1,000.