Legislative Watch

Action needed to help reduce cruelty and neglect of dogs in Washington State!

Last week brought some exciting progress for many of the bills that PAWS is supporting that will help animals. Three Senate bills moved out of committee and are now in the Rules Committee.

The way this committee generally works is that Democratic legislators “pull” democrat-sponsored bills and Republicans “pull” republican-sponsored bills to be voted upon. The bills have to be “pulled” out of the Rules Committee in order for them to be calendared for a Senate floor vote.

PRIMARY ACTION ITEMS: We are asking you to contact the Democratic legislators on the Rules Committee and ask them to pull SSB 5094 Senator Palumbo’s bill to prevent breed-based dog regulation, and support it during the Senate floor vote.

At the same time, encourage them to vote in favor of SSB 5356 (anti-tethering) and SSB 5063 (adoption fee tax bill).

If your local legislator is a Republican, please contact them too as it’s very important they hear from constituents to vote “yes” on these animal-friendly bills!

Senator Fain is on the Rules Committee and since he is the prime sponsor of SSB 5356 the anti-tethering bill, and SSB 5063 the animal adoption fee tax exemption bill, he should be able to get those bills “pulled” for a vote.

The Senate Rules Committee meets on Tuesday and then every few days to pull bills to the Senate floor calendar. The next one is Tuesday February 21st.

Contact Senate Rules Committee Members

Thank you for taking action to make a difference for dogs across Washington State!

2017 animal-related bills currently before the state legislature

The 2017 legislative session began on Monday January 9, and already there are several bills that can help animals and are worthy of support.

One of the bills we’ve been working on is SB 5356, which will address the tethering of dogs, helping to address their quality of life and provide animal control officers with more effective enforcement options. The bill has been assigned to the Senate Law and Justice Committee, but no hearing has been scheduled as of 1/20/17.

The Law and Justice Committee is comprised of the following members: Padden, Chair (R); O'Ban, Vice Chair (R); Pedersen; Angel; Darneille; Frockt; Wilson

If you live within the district of any of these committee members, we encourage you to contact them and ask for the bill to receive a hearing. Determine your district 

PAWS is working on this bill with Senator Fain, who has been a true friend of the animals supporting legislation such as HB 2644 — improving the bonding and forfeiture law and SSB 5501 that improved the law preventing cruelty to animals.

Other bills that PAWS is supporting this session:

SB 5063

This bill modifies business and occupation taxation provisions with regard to pet adoption fees. The Federation and PAWS, along with colleagues across the state, have been working with the Department of Revenue to clarify this issue and ensure that adoption fees charged by legitimate shelters and rescues are not part of the B&O tax.

By Senators Fain and Palumbo

Referred to Committee on Ways & Means and a hearing is scheduled for February 2, but still needs to get voted out of committee before the deadline of February 24.

Please review the committee list below to see if your legislator is a member of the Ways and Means Committee; and then contact them about voting the bill out of committee. Or you can contact the chair to request the bill be voted out of committee.  

 

Members: Braun, Chair (R); Brown, Vice Chair (R); Rossi, Vice Chair (R); Honeyford, Vice Chair, Capital Budget (R); Rolfes; Frockt; Ranker; Bailey; Becker; Billig; Carlyle; Conway; Darneille; Fain; Hasegawa; Keiser; Miloscia; Padden; Pedersen; Rivers; Schoesler; Warnick; Zeiger

Submit online comments to your local representatives and senator on the bill

SB 5094

Specifies that a dog's breed cannot factor into the determination of whether or not a dog is dangerous or potentially dangerous. Prohibits local jurisdictions from restricting the possession of dogs based on breed.

By Senators Palumbo, Fain, and Wilson

The bill had a hearing on January 17 in the Committee on Local Government, but it too has not been voted out of the committee.  We need your help reaching out to the committee to ask it be voted out of committee before the cut-off of February 17.

Please review the committee list below to see if your legislator is a member of the Committee on Local Government; and then contact them about voting the bill out of committee. Or you can contact the chair to request the bill be voted out of committee.  

Members: Short, Chair (R); Angel, Vice Chair (R); Takko; Palumbo; Sheldon

Submit online comments to the Local Government Committee

Submit online comments to your local representatives and senator on the bill

HB 1110

To protect horses, this bill prohibits a person from: (1) Slaughtering a horse if the person knows or should know that the meat from the slaughtered animal is intended to be used for human consumption; and (2) Possessing, purchasing, bartering, selling, or transporting horses if the person knows or should know that the horse or its meat will be used for human consumption.

Sponsors: Appleton, Stanford, Doglio, and Pollet

Contact the committee chair and co-chair of the Judiciary Committee to ask them to schedule the bill for a hearing.

Submit online comments to your local representatives and senator on the bill

HB 1118

Provides a person with immunity from civil liability for any damage or injury that results from his or her entry into a vehicle for the purpose of rendering assistance to an animal, minor, or vulnerable adult present in the vehicle.

Sponsors: Representatives Peterson, Appleton, McBride, Pike, Stanford, Jinkins, Fey, and Gregerson

Scheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on Judiciary at 10:00 AM on January 17th.

Contact the committee chair and co-chair of the Judiciary Committee to ask them to schedule the bill for a hearing.

Submit online comments to your local representatives and senator on the bill

HB 1090

Prohibits a city or county from prohibiting the possession of a dog based upon its breed, imposing requirements specific to possession of a dog based upon its breed, or declaring a dog dangerous or potentially dangerous based upon its breed unless certain conditions are met.

This bill was introduced during the previous session, and to make it more acceptable to city and county interests, this version only has one requirement:  if a city or county has dog breed restrictions, it needs to offer a way to exempt dogs that are well behaved (pass a canine behavioral test). 

Sponsors: Appleton, Stanford, Goodman, Frame, Buys, Gregerson, and Peterson

Referred to the House Judiciary Committee but currently no hearing has been scheduled.

Contact the committee chair and co-chair of the Judiciary Committee to ask them to schedule the bill for a hearing.

Submit online comments to your local representatives and senator on the bill

HB 1095

Changes RCW 19.94.540 regarding the requirements for wholesale containers of fifty-five gallons or more of engine coolant or antifreeze to have bittering agents to protect children and pets from accidental ingestion.

Sponsors: Appleton, Pollet, Peterson  

It passed out of Committee on Business and Financial Services and has been referred to the Rules Committee.

Contact the committee chair and co-chair of the Business and Financial Services Committee to ask them to schedule the bill for a hearing. 

Submit online comments to your local representatives and senator on the bill