As announced earlier this year, IBPSA has teamed with the Animal Policy Group to bring additional legislative insight and support for IBPSA Members. As the pet care industry has grown so, too, has related legislative action, particularly at the state level of government and we want to make sure our membership stays on top of what could affect them, as well as offer assistance in educating legislators on the facts of owning and operating a safe and prosperous pet care business. In this Legislative News Update, you’ll find Animal Policy Group’s highlighted legislation from their bi-weekly full report. These bills can often be harbingers of similar bills happening in other areas. We’ll also scan the current news and bring you highlights related to pet industry legislation and regulation.
Legislative support from IBPSA is one of the benefits of your membership. Be sure to keep IBPSA apprised of legislative activity in your area.
Washington Increases Business/Occupation Tax in 2020
Beginning January 1, 2020, Washington’s HB2158 will increase the business and occupation tax for services from 1.5% to 1.8%. The money is being earmarked for a Workforce Education Investment program to help the state reinvest in economic development.
Illinois Bill Requiring Fire Alarm Systems or 24/7 Staffing Heads to Governor
Illinois HB3390, requiring kennels to have a fire alarm system or be staffed 24/7, has passed the legislature and will be sent to the state’s governor shortly.
Note: To read the full Animal Policy Group biweekly report, the PDF is available via your IBPSA Member dashboard in the Legislative News Workspace. Here, you can also post and discuss legislative-related topics relative to your area.
Earlier this week, New York lawmakers passed a ban on cat declawing. The bill now awaits the signature of New York’s governor. Per the New York Times, the state joins several cities in banning declawing, including Los Angeles and Denver. Also, noted in the article, several other states including California, New Jersey and Massachusetts, are considering bans.
Also in New York, a bill aimed at preventing the sale of some animals in retail stores is reportedly picking up opposition and support across the state. The legislation would ban the sale of dogs, cats and rabbits at the retail level. On January 1st of this year, California became the first state to ban retailers from selling live dogs, cats or rabbits unless the animal was obtained from a rescue organization.
As of next month, it will be easier to keep native animals as pets in South Australia. Starting in July, there will be no need for permits to keep bearded dragons and 40 other native species. The “modernised wildlife regulations…(are) aiming to strengthen the bond between people and native animals.”
“Lucy’s Law” was presented to Parliament last month and is expected to go into effect in England in April 2020. The law will ban the sale of kittens and puppies from third parties. The new law would require animals to be born and reared in a safe environment, with their mother, and to be sold from their place of birth. The law is also designed to deter smugglers who abuse the Pet Travel Scheme to bring young animals into the UK to be sold.
In November, Texans will vote on an amendment to their state constitution allowing police dogs and other law enforcement animals retire in their old age to live with their handler or other caretaker. The state’s constitution currently prevents law enforcement agencies from transferring valuable property to a private person or organization for free.
Animal Policy Group’s founder and CEO, Mark Cushing, will present a session on “Legislation and Agency Challenges in the Pet Care Services Industry” at the Seventh Annual IBPSA Pet Care Services Educational Conference & Trade Show happening October 1-3, 2019, in Palm Springs, California. How do legislation and agency regulations impact you as a pet care services provider? As a business owner? What can you do when faced with unfavorable legislation or agency rules? Whether you’re a legislative “wonk” or if your knowledge is limited to Schoolhouse Rock’s “I’m Just a Bill”, this eye-opening and engaging session breaks down the legislative realities of working in the pet care services industry. Learn more about the session here.
The progress of a lawsuit by a former employee, a groomer, against a pet boarding facility for an alleged injury sustained on the job is being followed in Pet Care Pro Quarterly. The claims in the lawsuit are asserted under “common law”—that is, no violation of specific state pet boarding or grooming codes and regulations is needed to bring a lawsuit for what the employee claims was, briefly stated, the facility’s negligence in safety and training. The former employee is suing for a million dollars. “Lawsuit Watch: Employee Sues Pet Boarding Facility for $1 Million for Alleged Injuries Sustained While Grooming” can be found on page 18 of the Q2 2019 issue of Pet Care Pro Quarterly.