Tag Archives: reptile ban

Kansas Seeks to Ban Venomous Snakes: SB 132

Kansas SB 132 Seeks to Ban ALL Non-native Venomous Snakes
Kansas SB 132 Seeks to Ban ALL Non-native Venomous Snakes

The Kansas State Senate has just introduced Senate Bill 132, that if passed as written, would ban the possession of all non-native venomous snakes in the Sunflower State. SB 132 is an amendment to the existing “Dangerous Regulated Animals” law passed in 2005.

Specifically, SB 132 would amend the definition of “Dangerous Regulated Animal” and removed the grandfather clause that has protected the rights of qualified venomous snake owners to keep and breed their animals, to read:

“Dangerous regulated animal” means a live or slaughtered parts of:  (1) Lions, tigers, leopards, jaguars, cheetahs and mountain lions, or any hybrid thereof; (2) bears or any hybrid thereof; and (3) any nonhuman primate; (4) any wolf, excluding hybrids; and (5) all non-native, venomous snakes.

Nicole Paquette, Vice President of Wildlife Protection for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), wrote this piece of legislation when she worked as General Counsel for the animal rights group now known as Born Free USA. The law passed in Kansas in 2005, is the basis for HSUS’ model Dangerous Wild Animal (DWA) legislative proposal that is being touted as the recommendation of the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Animal Law Committee. This is a powerful endorsement for HSUS, and is gaining much traction with legislators and animal law attorneys across the country. 

640px-American_Bar_Association.svgNow, armed with the ABA Animal Law Committee recommendations, it appears a new pattern is emerging in the HSUS legislative strategy to separate animals from their owners. Not only is HSUS targeting states that have not traditionally embraced their extreme ideology, but Paquette and her legislative team are visiting states where dangerous animal legislation has succeeded in the past, and are attempting to make these laws even more restrictive. 

Some have argued that the ABA Animal Law Committee recommendations are somehow unimportant because they have not been fully adopted by the ABA House of Delegates. The US Herpetoculture Alliance cannot emphasize strongly enough that this position is naive and dangerous. HSUS is using these recommendations as a tool right now. Explaining to a legislator, after the fact, the nuances of whether the recommendations have been adopted by the full body is a subtly that will be lost on most lawmakers. HSUS’ model legislation is the recommendation of the ABA Animal Law Committee. That is more than enough for most politicians.

Look to see this pattern of returning to states with DWA legislation already on the books to add further restrictions continuing in 2015. Legislative season is just getting under way. Stay tuned to Herp Alliance for the best news and analysis in herpetoculure.

 

NC Reptile Ban: HSUS Dangerous Wild Animals

Reptile Ban: HSUS to Introduce DWA Legislation to NC in 2015

The Carolina Tiger Rescue (CTR) announced on their web site that, “Carolina Tiger [Rescue] will join the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) in introducing legislation banning the private individual ownership of wild cats in NC.” However, this legislation may cover more than big cats. The HSUS model Dangerous Wild Animal (DWA) legislation, for which they received the stamp of approval from the American Bar Association (ABA) Animal Law Committee in 2014, includes large constrictors (even boa constrictors) and venomous snakes.

The CTR is formerly the Carnivore Preservation Trust (CPT) whose image was tarnished in 2007 when then CPT board member Lorraine Smith was fired after engaging in illegal lobbying activities as the Curator of Mammals for the NC Zoo in Asheboro. CPT has since changed their name to CTR in an effort to reinvent themselves in the mold of Big Cat Rescue in Tampa, Florida.

Smith lobbied door-to-door in the legislature with Nicole Paquette, then Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Born Free USA, advocating for the dangerous animal bill Paquette wrote. The NC Zoo is an agency of the NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources. State employees are not allowed by law to lobby the legislature. Smith was subsequently fired.

Nicole Paquette is The HSUS's Vice President of Wildlife Protection.  Photo: Pete Marovich/For The HSUS
Nicole Paquette is The HSUS’s Vice President of Wildlife Protection.
Photo: Pete Marovich/For The HSUS

Interestingly, Paquette now works for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) as the Vice President of Wildlife Protection, and the bill she wrote for NC in 2005 has evolved into HSUS’s model DWA legislation endorsed by the ABA Animal Law Committee. If HSUS plans on introducing their model DWA legislation, it will include reptiles.

As of today, the HSUS DWA bill has not been introduced in NC. We don’t know yet who the sponsor will be or what the precise language of the bill will be. The North Carolina 2015 Legislative session just began last week and will run through the end of June. We expect that this bill will be introduced relatively soon.

… and so it begins. ~ J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings

It is likely that in 2015 HSUS will seek to capitalize on the endorsement of their DWA legislation by the ABA Animal Law Committee by pushing for an aggressive state level campaign to install their model as law in as many states as possible. Stay tuned to Herp Alliance for the most accurate news and analysis in herpetoculture.


“In the Summer of 2014 the sins of HSUS hit home with a vengeance when HSUS, Born Free USA and other co-defendants agreed to pay $15.75 million to settle a federal lawsuit filed against them by Feld Entertainment under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act. As a result, the charity watchdog group, Charity Navigator, revoked HSUS’ mediocre 3-star rating and issued a “Donor Advisory” warning. Charity Navigator issued the warning soon after news of the HSUS settlement made the news. The animal rights behemoth lost its insurance coverage in 2010 likely putting donors on the hook for HSUS’ legal misadventures.” ~ The Last Word, November 6, 2014

Reptile Ban in Dunedin Florida Unconstitutional

10511425_665398470208776_5576830582514919296_oAbout an hour ago the United States Association of Reptile Keepers (USARK) reported that almost all snakes will be banned within the city of Dunedin, Florida. They did not include a copy of the proposed ordinance. However, if they are correct, the move would contravene Florida’s State Constitution.

“Dunedin, Florida will likely pass a ban on nearly all snakes unless they hear resistance. Tomorrow (12/4/14) at 6:30 PM the revised ordinance will be heard and could pass including a ban on nearly all snakes.” ~ USARK

USARK sent out an action alert with a form letter to their membership encouraging opposition to the proposed ordinance. In the alert they urge Florida residents and parties outside the state to contact the city commission citing reasons to oppose the proposal. What USARK overlooks is that only Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has the authority under the Florida State Constitution to regulate “wildlife.”

“If an ordinance is to be considered, input from citizens and alternatives to over-reaching bans should be at the forefront of discussions.” ~ excerpt USARK form letter

The appeal to city commissioners by USARK attempts to make several arguments, except the most salient one: the Dunedin City Commission cannot pass and enforce an ordinance that is in violation of the Florida Constitution.

It is likely that the City of Dunedin, like USARK, is unaware that this proposed ordinance violates State Constitution. We commend USARK for the effort. However we suggest they refocus their argument on the issue of preemption.

If you plan to contact the Dunedin City Commission consider focusing on educating them to the fact that the authority to regulate wildlife is under the sole purview of FWC.

Link to USARK Action Alert

Illinois Action Alert – OPPOSE IL HB 5940

1-Logos_Revised_2_BW-002Illinois House Bill 5940 is another bill that seeks to modify the Illinois Dangerous Animals Act.  HB 5940 was written by HSUS and is being shepherded through the legislature by HSUS’s paid lobbyist, Carpenter Lipps & Leland LLP.

HB 5940 goes before the Agriculture and Conservation Committee tomorrow, May 13, 2014 at 9:00 a.m.

The full text of Amendment 2 to HB 5940 can be read here.  This is an HSUS ballot initiative and it seeks to impose more restrictions on owners of exotic animals, whose definition currently includes all “poisonous and life threatening reptiles.”

HSUS’s position on this initiative is so restrictive that they do not wish to include an exemption for the Zoological Association of America (as did Ohio and Maryland), one of two national accreditation organizations whose member institutions include Six Flags Wild Safari Animal Park (NJ), Orange County Zoo (CA), Carson Springs Wildlife Conservation Foundation (FL), Fossil Rim Wildlife Center (TX), and many others.

If SB 902 does not pass, HB 5940 will put further restrictions on “poisonous and life threatening reptiles,” which Illinois case law has defined to include certain large constrictors over 15′ in length.

The members of the Senate Agriculture and Conservation Committee can be found here.  Please call, email and fax them TODAY to vote NO on HB 5940.

In the meantime, SB 902 goes before the Illinois House Agriculture & Conservation Committee tomorrow, May 13, 2014 at 2:30 p.m.  The members of that committee can be found here.  Please call, email and fax them TODAY to vote YES on SB 902.

Advocacy, Accountability and Unity

OPINION

A lot has changed over the last year in the reptile community.  In December 2012, Andrew Wyatt resigned from USARK, the trade organization that he co-founded in 2008.  In January 2013, we co-f0unded the US Herpetoculture Alliance.  Although originally designed and organized to be an advocacy organization on behalf of herpetoculture, it has evolved into an education, conservation and information organization.  We do not engage directly in legislative issues.  But we analyze them and we will report on them.  We do not accept donations and everyone involved with Herp Alliance does so on a volunteer basis.  Herp Alliance has never paid a salary to an employee or an independent contractor.

Mike Canning's Facebook page as of February 2, 2014, describing himself as the former president and CEO.

Meanwhile, changes have been afoot at the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC) as well.  Although PIJAC has been conspicuously silent on the topic, Mike Canning has announced on his Facebook page that he is the former President and CEO of PIJAC.  Notably, former Vice President of Government Affairs & General Counsel, Mike Maddux has also disappeared from the PIJAC web site, as well as Bambi Nicole Osborne, Esq., Director of Government Affairs.  PIJAC has apparently done some quiet housecleaning.

People who are “Leaders in the Industry” have called for “unity.”  Any criticism of the way legislative issues have been handled (or not handled) that we have published has been criticized as “divisive” and not in the best interests of the industry.  I disagree.  HSUS is not going to back away from the persecution of reptile keepers because of unity in the community. Wayne Pacelle is not going to say, “Let them keep their large constrictors.  They are all such great friends.”

What this industry needs is competence, advocacy and accountability.

According to USARK, they have been on a banner run of fund raising in the few months that have passed since they announced the filing of their federal lawsuit challenging the Constrictor Rule of the Lacey Act.   USARK should be commended for retaining counsel and filing their lawsuit.  It is the only hope to reverse the damage done by the Constrictor Rule.

Rumors in the reptile community have circulated with some industry insiders claiming that there is a “99%” chance that USARK’s lawsuit will be victorious.  (These are odds that no lawyer could guarantee.)  And while wave after wave of information has leaked out of Washington DC, with Herp Alliance intercepting direct correspondence from HSUS to members of Congress, USARK continues to maintain that it is on top of the situation and is doing “much, much more.”  More of what, remains to be seen.

What we have not seen are advocacy letters from USARK to members of Congress pleading the case against listing five additional species to the Constrictor Rule.

The Categorical Exclusion Rule (or, CatX, as coined by Andrew Wyatt) just reopened for comment.  Although USARK has adopted the nomenclature of Cat Ex, it was Herp Alliance, last year, who secured this extension on the comment period.  Those of you who have not yet sent letters opposing CatX should do so immediately.

Bills that would dramatically affect herpetoculture and the right to privately keep reptiles are pending in Wisconsin, New Jersey, New York, West Virginia, Maryland, and South Carolina right now, with more bills in drafting departments of other states as I write.  The avalanche of legislation started by the animal rights industry that began a few years ago against reptile keeping continues to grow and to gain momentum.

On the state level, USARK has maintained a low profile.  Numerous supporters Wild Animals Are not petshave stated on Facebook that USARK will no longer engage at the state level.  Some announcements have been made. There have been a few action alerts encouraging stakeholders to write letters and emails.  Some bills have been overlooked until days after their introduction.  So far, USARK has not testified at a state committee hearing in this legislative session, either in person, or through written testimony.  Whether they will actually jump into the game or not remains to be seen.  It is possible that their hands are tied by funding a federal lawsuit which will certainly cost millions of dollars to fund if they intend to see it to its end.  Where will that money come from?  Gary Bagnall is not going to pony up seven figures to defend the right to keep large retics.  In fact, Zoo Med will be able to peddle more hot rocks and amateur equipment to corn snake keepers when the market is limited to the less controversial species.  The end game cannot be a full blown lawsuit.  The money is simply not there.

If  USARK abandons state level regulation, reptile bans at the state level will become a certainty.

The reptile community has donated tens of thousands of dollars to USARK.  If they are now exclusively a federal trade organization, they need to make that known.  When small business owners and private keepers are donating their hard earned dollars to the only trade organization that is left in existence to advocate for their rights, they have the right to know what is being done.  They have the right to be critical and they have the right to demand action.  They are the only recipient of your donations.  They are accountable to their constituents.  Competence, advocacy and accountability.  That is what they owe to herpetoculture and that is what should be demanded and delivered.

Unity in the face of inertia might make us all better friends so that we can comfort each other while our pets get criminalized.

WV: Another Win For Herpetoculture!

stsealAfter engaging Chairman Miley’s office at the WV House Judiciary Committee, and Chairman Craig’s office at WV House Natural Resources Committee the US Herpetoculture Alliance has been informed that it is “highly unlikely” that SB 466 and HB 2209 will move forward. West Virginia herpetoculturists can breathe a sigh of relief, both of these bills will be dead tomorrow. They will both hit deadlines for reporting out of committee on April 11, 2013.

HB 2209 was “dead on arrival.”  Once introduced into the WV House of Delegates, it never found any traction once it was referred to committee. However, SB 466 was a much different story and gave us quite a scare.

SB 466 is a broad sweeping, ambiguous ban on exotic animals. “Dangerous Wild Animals” are defined as “mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and aquatic life, including hybrids, that are dangerous to humans, other animals and the environment due to their inherent nature.”  Wildlife, agricultural animals and domestic animals already defined by West Virginia statute are exempted.  However, SB 466 vests authority to a Dangerous Wild Animal Board (the “Board”)  to list dangerous wild animals pursuant to administrative rule making authority.

SB 466 was sponsored by Senate Majority Whip William Laird. Senator Laird is also Chairman of the Senate Natural Resources Committee to which SB 466 was referred. SB 466 was reported favorably out of Natural Resources on March 6th, the same day it was introduced and referred to committee. Subsequently SB 466 was reported out of the Senate Finance Committee without notice nor testimony on April 2nd where it then moved to the Senate floor and passed by a vote of 32-1 on April 3rd.

SB 466 then crossed over to the House of Delegates and was referred to the House Judiciary and Finance Committees. This was where the Herp Alliance was able to more fully engage the bill. The Herp Alliance CEO, Andrew Wyatt, engaged in a number of conversations with Chairman Wiley’s office at House Judiciary. Wyatt had strong grass roots support from Joe Perdue, Greg Stephens and dozens of Herp Alliance supporters from West Virginia Reptile Watch, a WV watchdog group of businessmen and herp enthusiasts. Wyatt was told that SB 466 had not been assigned to an attorney at House Judiciary, and didn’t likely have enough momentum to run prior to the April 11 deadline. The only way SB 466 could move forward is to be reported out of the Judiciary committee, and then be reported out of the Finance committee by tomorrow. That is NOT likely to happen.

The Herp Alliance would like to thank West Virginia Reptile Watch and it’s leaders Joe Perdue and Greg Stephens for a job well done! Tomorrow will be a great new day in West Virginia!

 

ALERT: WV SB 466 Passes Senate

stsealOn March 6, 2013, West Virginia Senators Laird, Kessler, Stollings, Fitzsimmons and Williams introduced Senate Bill 466, entitled “Dangerous Wild Animals Act.”

On April 2, 2013 passed the West Virginia Senate by a vote of 32-1. The US Herpetoculture Alliance has been in direct contact this morning with Senator Laird who is the primary sponsor. Senator Laird is also the Chairman of Senate Natural Resources Committee, and the Senate Majority “Whip”. He has made us aware that SB 466 (Committee Substitute) was reported favorably by the Natural Resources Committee on March 6, 2013; and out of the Senate Finance Committee where it subsequently passed a full vote on the Senate Floor yesterday.

Today SB 466 “crossed over” to the West Virginia House and was referred to the House Judiciary and Finance Committees. Herp Alliance spoke with Chairman Tim Miley office of the Judiciary Committee and registered our concerns with the bill. Chairman Miley’s office informed us that SB 466 must be reported favorably out of both committees by Thursday April 11, 2013. Then SB 466 must be passed by the full House by Monday April 15.

SB 466 is a broad sweeping, ambiguous ban on exotic animals.  ”Dangerous Wild Animals” are defined as “mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and aquatic life, including hybrids, that are dangerous to humans, other animals and the environment due to their inherent nature.”  Wildlife, agricultural animals and domestic animals already defined by West Virginia statute are exempted.  However, SB 466 vests authority to a Dangerous Wild Animal Board (the “Board”)  to list dangerous wild animals pursuant to administrative rule making authority.

Pursuant to SB 466, the Board is comprised of exactly three people:  the Commissioner of the Department of Agriculture, the Secretary of the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources and the Director of the Division of Natural Resources, or their designees.  These three government officials would have complete discretion to decide at any time what animals will or will not be banned without legislative process.

SB 466 is a very dangerous bill that was pushed by Senate leadership. We must STOP it in the House. Please take action today!

Thank you for your help and grassroots support!

Unfortunately, the West Virginia House Judiciary Committee will not allow our form emails through to the committee members.  Below is a sample letter and a block with all of the committee members’s emails.   Please follow the directions below to voice your opposition to SB 466.

Directions:

  • Copy this list of emails and paste them into the “TO” field of an email:
    • tim.miley@wvhouse.gov, tmanchin@manchininjurylaw.com,
      john.ellem@wvhouse.gov,
      patrick.lane@wvhouse.gov,
      mike.ferro@wvhouse.gov,
      barbaraf@wvhouse.gov,
      mhunt@markahunt.com, linda.longstreth@wvhouse.gov, mike.manypenny@wvhouse.gov,
      justin.marcum@wvhouse.gov, clif.moore@wvhouse.gov,
      john.pino@wvhouse.gov,
      meshea.poore@wvhouse.gov, stephen.skinner@wvhouse.gov, isaac.sponaugle@wvhouse.gov, danny.wells@wvhouse.gov,
      cindy.frich@wvhouse.gov,
      bill.hamilton@wvhouse.gov, eric.householder@wvhouse.gov, woody.ireland@wvhouse.gov, john.mccuskey@wvhouse.gov, john.oneal@wvhouse.gov
      john@overington.com,
      john.shott@wvhouse.gov,
      kelli.sobonya@wvhouse.gov
  • Copy this form letter below (or write your own) and paste it into the body of your email;
  • Personalize your message in the box below or just sign it if you wish; and Fill in the text code below; and
  • Hit send!

Form Letter:

Dear House Judiciary Committee Members:

As a resident/ stakeholder in West Virginia I want to commend you for holding the public safety of the citizens of this state in such high regard. Although I appreciate what you are trying to accomplish with SB 466, it is too far reaching and will hurt tax paying business owners in our state. It will hurt me and my family.

Herpetoculture, the science and practice of producing high quality captive bred reptiles for zoos, scientific research, education and TV & film brings in $15 million in revenue annually in West Virginia. Hundreds of Weat Virginia families rely on herpetoculture for all or part of their income. Herpetoculture, a/k/a reptile farming, can be equated to aquaculture, a/k/a fish farming. Herpetoculture has become a valuable all-American agricultural product. Herpetoculture has become part of the economic fabric of West Virginia.

My family and I understand and appreciate your concern for public safety. We all want to raise our families in safety, but we also want to put food on the table and clothes on our children’s backs. Regardless of cultural bias and antiquated stereotypes, historically and statistically reptiles have never posed a public safety risk in West Virginia. Only one person has ever died from a captive reptile in West Virginia. That was last year when a Pentecostal preacher was bitten by his own snake and died. Even that would fall into the realm of occupational hazard, not a public safety risk. Traditional family pets and domestic livestock have proven to be much more dangerous to the public than any reptiles.

In addition, I have real concerns about certain provisions of SB 466. I question the constitutionality of rendering multiple species of animals within the state illegal based on the complete discretion of three government individuals.

There are no exemptions for educational institutions, rescue organizations, sanctuaries or any private owners. Current owners of banned animals (who would not know what animals are banned until after the passage of SB 466 when the Board determines that list) will only be grandfathered in provided that they meet a strict set of guidelines, including insurance requirements, which may be impossible to meet.

SB 466 will vest the West Virginia government with complete authority to ban whatever species of animals it so chooses. It will decimate small businesses and it will create a situation of chaos for owners of banned animals who will not know until SB 466 becomes law that they are subject to onerous and impossible requirements, putting not only the owners at risk, but the animals themselves.

Please do not support SB 466. As written, SB 466 puts undue hardship on my family in tough economic times. SB 466 is bad for my family, and bad for the State of West Virginia.

Thank you for your consideration,

[SIGN YOUR NAME HERE]

 

Success in Connecticut: HB 5832 Stopped!

This morning the US Herpetoculture Alliance contacted the Joint Committee on the Environment and has learned that HB 5832 will NOT move forward in the 2013 Legislative Session.

HB 5832 proposed that section 26-40a of the general statutes be amended to provide that “the sale, transfer or breeding of certain exotic animals is also prohibited and to add tigers, mole vipers, boa constrictors, Burmese pythons and sea snakes to the list of prohibited animals. . .”

HB 5832 was referred to the Connecticut Joint Committee on the Environment on January 24, 2013 where it received strong grass roots opposition spearheaded by the Herp Alliance facilitation of more than 350 letters in opposition. In order to move forward HB 5832 would have needed to receive a Favorable Report prior to today’s deadline of April 3, 2013 at 5PM EST. After speaking with the Joint Committee on the Environment this morning Herp Alliance has learned that there will be no further action on HB 5832. Boa constrictors, Burmese pythons and other reptiles will not be banned in Connecticut!

The Herp Alliance engaged in the process with the Connecticut Joint Committee on the Environment early in the game. Our efforts were supported by strong grass roots opposition, and we successfully stalled HB 5832 in committee. The Herp Alliance fielded yet another well formulated state level strategy to protect the future of herpetoculture, and it worked!

Thank you to all of those who participated in the Herp Alliance email campaign that generated 360 emails to Environment Committee members OPPOSING HB 5832! 

 

Herpetoculture Victorious in Texas!

Wilson_courthouseThe small county of Wilson in central Texas was the scene of a solid victory for herpetoculture. The US Herpetoculure Alliance provided the herpers of Wilson County with a ‘policy solution’ that ultimately reversed ordinance 1998-1 banning constricting and venomous snakes. All exotic constrictors and venomous snakes are once again legal in Wilson County, Texas.

As a local business man and Wilson County resident, Jason Royer became the face of Wilson County herpers. Jason did an exemplary job of appealing to the commissioners’ sense of fair play by clearly articulating the incongruity of the ordinance and securing a commitment to be heard on the issue at the next commissioners meeting.

Bonnie and Randall Berry helped facilitate a grass roots letter writing campaign to support the interests of Wilson County herpers. At the commissioners meeting, Jason received additional support from the expert testimony of Dr. Tim Tristan, Dave Barker and Pete Mimikos. These experts were able to dispel the misinformation that had laid the foundation for the original ordinance and provided strong scientific basis to make sound decisions going forward. The Wilson County Commissioners received the herpers well and agreed to reconsider the ordinance.

The following week, Wilson County Commissioners gave approval for the Herp Alliance to write a proposal for amending the county ordinance. The draft proposal was submitted by Jason Royer and met with general approval. The Commissioners did ask that the Herp Alliance add a clause that all Texas Parks & Wildlife ‘controlled exotic snake’ permit holders submit a copy of their permits to the Sheriff’s Department. US Herp Alliance CEO, Andrew Wyatt, requested that a vote be scheduled on the proposed amendment with the County Clerks office. Wyatt then flew to Texas to personally present the proposal and answer questions for the Wilson County Commissioners. Subsequently the Commissioners voted unanimously to accept the proposal as law in Wilson County. All exotic constrictors and venomous snakes are once again legal in Wilson County Texas.

The US Herpetoculture Alliance is the most effective advocate for the interests of herpetoculture at the local, state and federal levels.

Herp Alliance Amendment Wilson County Ordinance 1998-1

 

UPDATE Connecticut: Boas & Burms Appear Safe- HB5832

After further contact with Connecticut Co-Chair of the Joint Committee on the Environment Linda Gentile, the US Herpetoculture Alliance has learned that it appears unlikely that HB 5832 will move forward in the 2013 Legislative Session.

9da4985bc8c842b68be170ac9b4829adHB 5832 proposes that section 26-40a of the general statutes be amended to provide that “the sale, transfer or breeding of certain exotic animals is also prohibited and to add tigers, mole vipers, boa constrictors, Burmese pythons and sea snakes to the list of prohibited animals. . .”

HB 5832 was referred  to the Connecticut Joint Committee on the Environment on January 24, 2013. It has languished in committee since that time without a first reading. In order to move forward HB 5832 must receive a Favorable Report prior to a hard deadline of April 3, 2013 at 5PM EST. It must then be Reported Out of committee by April 10. While we will continue to monitor the process closely, with only eight working days left on the calendar prior to the April 3rd deadline, it is the opinion of the US Herpetoculture Alliance, that it appears unlikely that HB 5832 will find traction in the 2013 session.

We are awaiting confirmation from Co-Chair Gentile whether she has any intentions to push for an eleventh hour move of HB 5832.

Thank you to all of those who participated in the Herp Alliance email campaign that generated 360 emails to Environment Committee members OPPOSING HB 5832.

Stay tuned for any last minute updates.