NH House Passes Shortsighted Amendment Gutting Animal Cruelty Bill, Leaving Its Future Unknown
The House has passed an originally intended animal cruelty prevention bill, SB 569-FN, with a shortsighted and likely unconstitutional amendment created by the House Energy and Agriculture Committee, which not only strips the bill of its most vital sections, but weakens current law. Today’s full House vote of 205-125 adopting the amendment, came despite opposition to the amendment by the NH Association of Chiefs of Police, the NH American Civil Liberties Union, Animal Control Officers Association of NH, animal rescue organizations, the ASPCA, and the HSUS, as well as every non-profit animal shelter in the state of NH, who each signed a letter last month urging the House Committee to abandon the ill-advised changes to the bill.
The bill went through several lengthy and in-depth stakeholder meetings before being introduced. Certainly no law is perfect, but after that compromise process, as well as two Senate public hearings and four Senate votes, SB 569-FN was the closest to it.
However, after adopting the Committee Amendment (2018-1709h), the House version of the bill is dreadful for NH's animals and residents.
It is truly unfortunate that the House has disregarded the invaluable insight of those who are on the front-lines facing animal cruelty, such as law enforcement and local humane societies, and has instead caved to misconceptions created by those with special interests.
Check how your Rep voted here.
Yea vote = Support of misconceptions
Nay vote = Support of animal welfare
The Senate and House have now passed two different versions of the bill. As to whether or not there is still hope for the success of the Senate’s version of SB 569-FN is unknown. But to all those who reached out to your legislators, your efforts were not in vain; you united and shined a light on the truth that animal welfare is important to our residents. Whether victory lies within this year or in years to come - this is far from over.
StraightTwist will keep you up to date as more information becomes available, and will keep you posted on ways you can help if the opportunity arises.
Click For here more information on SB 569-FN and the House Committee Amendment.