JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) – The Missouri Senate voted Thursday to repeal many of the mandates included in a dog-breeding law approved by voters four months ago.
Some lawmakers fear the law could wipe out the state’s dog-breeding industry by forcing costly renovations to facilities and effectively limiting the number of dogs each business can sell. The Senate legislation would eliminate a cap on owning 50 breeding dogs and roll back various requirements on the dogs’ living conditions. It also would eliminate provisions that make any violation a crime.
Instead, the measure would allow civil penalties and a misdemeanor charge for repeate offenses. Under the Senate measure, dog-breeders would need to provide appropriate space for their animals based on regulations set by the Department of Agriculture. The bill also would allow licensing costs of up to $2,500 instead of $500, and would impose an additional $25 annual fee to finance state efforts to crack down on unlicensed dog breeders.
Senators passed the bill 20-14, with much of the support coming from Republicans who represent districts away the from the St. Louis and Kansas City areas. The legislation now moves to the House, where leaders said they planned to consider the Senate’s proposal rather than their own.
The dog-breeding ballot measure, called Proposition B, was approved by about 52 percent of voters last November.
Copyright Associated Press