Alex Passes Ordinance Dealing On Vicious And Dangerous Animals

By FactsWow Team

Posted on: 07 Jun, 2022

Ordinance Dealing With Vicious And Dangerous Animals The Alexandria City Council unanimously pushed through a law dealing with vicious and dangerous animals on Monday, expecting possible amendments shortly.

After two months of discussion, Council members said they felt it was essential to get something codified, so the Alexandria Police had the legal authority to act. If anything should happen, this is the concrete floor you need, said Councilwoman Donna Key-Kerr.

Because animals are considered property, there must be due process before they can be confiscated. Worried about that, City Attorney Jeff Graham decided that the Board of Works would be the body that would hear appeals related to the ordinance.

He added that the ordinance does an excellent job of balancing the interests of the public with those of pet owners. The regulation also sets a minimum fine of $500. 'It’s not the most beautiful thing, but it’s better than what you have got,' he said. 'It is a step up.'

Ordinance Effectiveness

The ordinance is expected to become effective 30 days after publication. 'The publication is a requirement of laws that contain penalties,' Graham said.

The ordinance, modeled after one suggested by humane societies, defines 'vicious' animals as those that cause severe injury or death. Such animals are prohibited as pets under the ordinance.

Dangerous animals are those that have bitten a person. That designation, however, does not need to be permanent and can be lifted after three years of good behavior as certified by an animal behavior specialist at the owner's cost.

However, Heike Ramsey, the head of adoption and foster coordinator for Homer’s Helpers, was in the audience and asked how police officers, 'who are not necessarily trained in animal control, will deal with animals and their owners.'

Animal Control Officers Alex has nothing but respect for police officers, 'but they are not animal control officers,' she said, 'these are great, but it’s a lot.' Ramsey also asked what provisions are made for the police or a future animal control officer who must confiscate a dog under the law. The city does not have a shelter.

'We do have a problem, and there has been a lot of discussion about where to house them,' said Council President Patty Kuhn. In most instances, vicious and dangerous dogs are transported to the Animal Protection League in Anderson.

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