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Dog Breed Ban Bill
According to currently Oklahoma law, it's illegal for communities to ban specific dog breeds. But now, one Senator wants to change that.
In 2009, a judge ruled Midwest City's ban on pit bulls as unconstitutional. But if Senate Bill 32 passes, communities like Midwest City will have the power to ban any dog breed they want.
"The vast majority of the population has dogs living in their homes and they do consider them part of their family," said Christy Counts, President of the Central Oklahoma Humane Society.
Christy Counts has two four-legged friends that she considers part of the family. But according to Counts, a new legislative bill could make her lose the dogs she loves.
"You're attacking people's family members when you're putting out a bill like this," said Counts.
Senator Patrick Anderson of Enid introduced a bill that if passed, would allow communities to ban specific dog breeds.
"It would allow those communities to make the decision on what breeds they felt they wanted to ban," said Senator Patrick Anderson.
"It would be heartbreaking for people," said Counts. "I mean, you're talking about families that may have had their dog for 10 years and suddenly they have to move out of the city or get rid of their family pet."
Counts, who is President of the Central Oklahoma Humane Society says a dog's breed does not define how it behaves. Instead, she says it's based on how the dog is raised.
"Dogs that are not spayed or neutered or have been tethered their entire life are 80-times more likely to be aggressive than a dog that's a family dog that's been spayed or neutered," said Counts.
Meanwhile, the Senator behind the bill is a dog owner himself.
Senator Anderson: "I have a beagle and a sheltie."
Marisa Mendelson, Fox 25:" How would you feel if Enid banned your particular kind of dog from your community and your family had to get rid of your dogs?"
Senator Anderson: "Well, that's a great question. But I would probably go and speak my mind at the City Council meetings, saying that I didn't think it was appropriate to ban this specific breed."
While Senator Anderson urges others to fight for their beliefs, the Central Oklahoma Humane Society plans to fight the bill.
"This type of bill, although the intention is pure and good, is probably not the best way to achieve the goal," said Counts.
Once the legislative session starts on February 4th, Senate Bill 32 will be assigned to a committee. The bill has to pass that committee in order to go on to the senate.
MARISA MENDELSON, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER
FOX 25 NEWS
Posted: Wednesday, January 16 2013, 10:40 PM CST
IN OKLAHOMA NEWS
Safe room mandates remain rare in tornado states
May 24, 2013 07:24 GMT
By DAVID A. LIEB Associated Press
MOORE, Okla. (AP) -- When a deadly tornado tore through the central Oklahoma city of Moore, many survivors emerged from their storm shelters to see their homes blown away.
The mayor suggested that storm shelters should perhaps be mandated for new homes. But that may be hard sell.
But not a single state currently requires storm shelters in new homes. And not even many communities do so.
Costs remain a deterrent despite the life-saving potential of personal storm shelters. So, too, does a general resistance to government mandates in politically conservative states in the nation's heartland where tornadoes are most prevalent.
Instead of a stick, Oklahoma currently offers a carrot to build storm shelters. It uses federal funds to award $2,000 rebates to residents who win a special storm-shelter lottery.
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