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New laws impact ag, animals, hunting

Part two in a series

The following is the second part in a review of notable new state laws taking effect on Jan. 1, 2019.

Dairy Farm Inspection Reports: Requires DPH (or the local public-health inspector) to provide a paper copy of the inspection report to a dairy farm being inspected at the time of the inspection.

Animal Control Facilities and Shelters: Adds new license-renewal requirements for animal control facilities and animal shelters, including breakdowns of incoming animals (stray, left by owner, etc.) and the ultimate disposition of those animals (adopted, euthanized, etc.) in the previous calendar year. Department of Agriculture must post this intake and outcome statistics on their website for each facility.

Urban Agriculture Zones: Allows municipalities to create urban agriculture zones and offer tax incentives to businesses associated with qualified agricultural products. Municipalities would also be allowed to authorize local utilities to offer wholesale or reduced rates for businesses in urban agriculture zones.

Animal Protection: Provides that nothing prevents a law enforcement officer from taking temporary custody of an animal that is being put in danger due to extreme heat or cold conditions; however, the officer must attempt to make contact with owner.

Also, the owner is responsible of cost required for veterinary care.

Reckless Dog Owner Penalties: Sets penalties for those found to be reckless dog owners and allows courts to confiscate dogs from those owners for periods ranging from 12 to 36 months for the first violation. Sets fines for each animal found in their care they refuse to relinquish.

Youth Resident Archery Deer Permits: Provides that the fees for youth resident archery deer permits shall be the same for non-resident youth permits; allows non-resident youths to apply for youth hunting and trapping licenses.

Youth Hunting and Trapping License: Combines the youth hunting and trapping licenses to make administering the act simpler for the Department of Natural Resources and easier for the public to understand.

Blaze Pink: Provides that hunters may wear blaze pink during firearm deer season and upland game season.

Cat/Dog Breeder Classification: Provides that those persons who have in their possession five female cats or dogs capable of reproduction will be classified as a dog breeder or cat breeder, rather than a kennel operator. This is an attempt to clarify the definitions to reflect current industry practices and reduce confusion for both licensees and consumers, as these facilities are currently grouped together despite being distinctly different types of operations.

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