**permission granted to cross-post and forward. If you don't live in Missouri please forward this to a friend or relative that does live here. Thank you**
Please contact your state representative and ask them to SUPPORT Missouri HB 1116 AS IS, which will prevent municipalities from passing any ordinance related to dogs that's breed-specific. It's very important to state you support the bill AS IS, without any amendments. This only takes a minute.
HB 1116 will not prevent cities from passing leash laws or generic dangerous dog ordinances, which all cities need. It will prevent cities from passing and enforcing any breed specific laws. As such, Independence/Gladstone/Grandview/Liberty/Excelsior Springs' etc. "pit bull bans" would become a thing of the past and make it easier to keep good dogs in good homes. There are Dangerous Dog Ordinances on the books to deal with any bad dog.
The trend in the St. Louis, Missouri suburbs has been to repeal breed-specific dog ordinances. HB 1116 was introduced by Rep. Ron Hicks from the Wentzville/St. Charles/Lake Saint Louis area.
HB 1116 would also do away with Kansas City, Missouri's mandatory spay/neuter ordinance for the "pit bull breeds". KC Pet Project, the private, non-profit contractor that operates the city's shelter has stated the MSN is detrimental to their efforts to achieve and keep no-kill status but the city persists in enforcing and promoting the ordinance. The ordinance passed in 2006, nearly eight years ago, so theoretically there should be almost no "pit bulls" in the shelter. I invite everyone to go to the Kansas City, Missouri municipal shelter and take a look at the shelter population to see how well the ordinance is working.
This will NOT affect Lee's Summit, Missouri's MSN as the Lee's Summit MSN covers everything (all dogs and cats). It is not breed-specific. They also don't really enforce it unless your dog or cat gets loose, so keep your pets up if you live in Lee's Summit and please start encouraging your city council to get rid of this unnecessary ordinance. This will also not affect the city of St. Louis, which has MSN for everything, much like Lee's Summit.
The main opposition to the bill has come from (1) the Missouri Alliance for Animal Legislation (MAAL), which thinks poor people shouldn't own dogs and the "pit bulls" may fall into the "wrong hands", so municipal (government) shelters should be allowed to kill them without trying to find homes for the dogs (now there's a "glass half-empty" attitude), and (2) the city of Kansas City, Missouri, which passed a ridiculous Emergency Resolution encouraging their reps and senators not to support the legislation. The vote was 11-0 with two council members absent. that topic will be covered in a separate e-mail for Kansas City, MO residents.
So far we've heard nothing from Springfield and Independence, the second and third largest cities in the state, respectively, which have pit bull bans. I've heard Springfield would like to do away with their ordinance but would prefer the state do it for them. Independence has municipal elections tomorrow (Tuesday, April 8) and municipal elections tend to "shut down the stupid" in Independence. Who knows what will happen once the elections are over.
There's also been no organized opposition to HB 1116 from the Missouri Municipal League, which is unusual.
Please contact your reps ASAP. Below is a message from Anne Edwards, the Vice President of the Missouri Federation of Animal Owners, with information on finding and contacting your state rep.
In the event Anne's link to find your state rep doesn't work, here is the link: Missouri House of Representatives
In the event the link to find your state rep's phone number doesn't work, here is the link: Representative Directory
Kim Krohn, Legislative Liaison, Greater Kansas City Dog Training Club
Miniature Bull Terrier club of America