Bill Text: NJ S2847 | 2016-2017 | Regular Session | Amended


Bill Title: Requires spaying or neutering of cats and dogs prior to sale or other release from animal rescue organization facility, kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound.

Spectrum: Slight Partisan Bill (Democrat 2-1)

Status: (Introduced) 2017-05-25 - Senate Amendment (28-0) (Sweeney) [S2847 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2016-S2847-Amended.html

[First Reprint]

SENATE, No. 2847

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

217th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED DECEMBER 12, 2016

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  STEPHEN M. SWEENEY

District 3 (Cumberland, Gloucester and Salem)

Senator  NILSA CRUZ-PEREZ

District 5 (Camden and Gloucester)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Requires spaying or neutering of cats or dogs prior to sale or other release from animal rescue organization facility, kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As reported by the Senate Economic Growth Committee on February 6, 2017, with amendments.

 


An Act concerning the spaying and neutering of cats and dogs, amending P.L.1941, c.151, P.L.1983, c.172, and P.L.2011, c.142, and supplementing Title 4 of the Revised Statutes.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.  (New section)  a.  Except as otherwise provided pursuant to subsection b. of this section, no cat or dog may be sold, bartered, exchanged, transferred, or released for adoption from an animal rescue organization facility, kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound unless the cat or dog has been spayed or neutered by a licensed veterinarian.  The animal rescue organization facility, kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound may charge the cost of spaying or neutering the cat or dog to the person assuming ownership from the animal rescue organization facility, kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound.

     b.  The provisions of subsection a. of this section shall not apply to a cat or dog that:

     (1)  is less than two months old;

     (2) a licensed veterinarian determines cannot be spayed or neutered for other health reasons affecting the cat or dog; or

     (3) is being placed in a foster home or transferred to another shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility by a shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound, except as otherwise provided in subsection h. of section 16 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.16).

     c.  Any person who violates subsection a. of this section shall be subject to a civil penalty of up to $1,000, to be collected by the Department of Health in a civil action by a summary proceeding under the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).  The Superior Court and the municipal courts shall have jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999" pursuant to this section, and all monies collected pursuant to this subsection shall be deposited in the "Animal Population Control Fund," established pursuant to subsection b. of section 6 of P.L.1983, c.172  (C.4:19A-5) for the purposes of the fund.

     d.  The department, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), may adopt any rules and regulations determined necessary to implement this section.

     e.  As used in this section:

     "Animal rescue organization" means the same as "animal rescue organization" as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1).

     "Kennel," "pet shop," "shelter," and "pound" mean the same as those terms are defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1).

 

      2.   Section 16 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.16) is amended to read as follows:

      16.  a.  The certified animal control officer appointed by the governing body of the municipality shall take into custody and impound any animal, to thereafter be euthanized or offered for adoption, as provided in this section:

      (1)  Any dog off the premises of the owner or of the person charged with the care of the dog, which is reasonably believed to be a stray dog;

      (2)  Any dog off the premises of the owner or the person charged with the care of the dog without a current registration tag 1[on its collar or elsewhere]1;

      (3)  Any female dog in season off the premises of the owner or the person charged with the care of the dog;

      (4)  Any dog or other animal which is suspected to be rabid; or

      (5)  Any dog or other animal off the premises of the owner or the person charged with 1[its] the dog's or other animal's1 care that is reported to, or observed by, a certified animal control officer to be ill, injured, or creating a threat to public health, safety, or welfare, or otherwise interfering with the enjoyment of property.

      b.   If an animal taken into custody and impounded pursuant to subsection a. of this section has a collar or harness with identification of the name and address of any person, or has a registration tag, or has a microchip with an identification number that can be traced to the owner or person charged with the care of the animal, or the owner or the person charged with the care of the animal is otherwise known, the certified animal control officer shall ascertain the name and address of the owner or the person charged with the care of the animal, and serve to the identified person as soon as practicable, a notice in writing that the animal has been seized and will be liable to be offered for adoption or euthanized if not claimed within seven days after the service of the notice.

      c.   A notice required pursuant to this section may be served:  (1) by delivering it to the person on whom it is to be served, or by leaving it at the person's usual or last known place of residence or the address given on the collar, harness, or microchip identification; or (2) by mailing the notice to that person at the person's usual or last known place of residence, or to the address given on the collar, harness or microchip identification.

      d.   A shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound receiving an animal from a certified animal control officer pursuant to subsection a. of this section, or from any other individual, group, or organization, shall hold the animal for at least seven days before offering 1[it] the animal1 for adoption, or euthanizing, relocating, or sterilizing the animal, except if:

      (1)  the animal is surrendered voluntarily by 1[its] the animal's1 owner to the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound, in which case 1the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound may immediately offer the animal for adoption or transfer the animal pursuant to1 the provisions of subsection e. of this section 1[shall apply]1 ; 1[or]1

      (2)  the animal is suspected of being rabid, in which case the provisions of subsection j. of this section shall apply 1[.

      If the animal is surrendered voluntarily by its owner and the animal's age, health, or behavior warrants euthanizing the animal before seven days have elapsed, the shelter, pound or kennel operating as a shelter or pound may euthanize the animal in a manner causing as little pain as possible and consistent with the provisions of R.S.4:22-19.  An animal that is stray or has been surrendered by anyone other than its owner may only be euthanized before seven days have elapsed if a licensed veterinarian determines that the animal is in extreme pain and cannot recover from the illness or condition that is causing the pain.] ; or

     (3) (a) the animal is surrendered voluntarily by the animal's owner and the animal's age, health, or behavior warrants euthanizing the animal, or (b) the  animal is suffering from an intractable illness other than rabies that threatens the welfare of the other impounded animals.  If any of the conditions identified in this paragraph are met, the animal may be euthanized before seven days have elapsed.

     Whenever a shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound euthanizes an animal, it shall administer the euthanasia in a manner that causes as little pain as possible and is consistent with the provisions of R.S.4:22-19.1

      e.   If a shelter, pound or kennel operating as a shelter or pound is not required to hold an animal for at least seven days pursuant to paragraph (1) of subsection d. of this section, the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound:

      (1)  shall offer the animal for adoption for at least seven days before euthanizing 1[it] the animal1 ; or

      (2)  may transfer the animal to an animal rescue organization facility or a foster home prior to offering 1[it] the animal1 for adoption if such a transfer is determined to be in the best interest of the animal by the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound.

      f.    Except as otherwise provided for under subsection e. of this section, no shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound receiving an animal from a certified animal control officer may transfer the animal to an animal rescue organization facility or a foster home until the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound has held the animal for at least seven days.

      g.   If the owner or the person charged with the care of the animal seeks to claim 1[it] the animal1 within seven days, or after the seven days have elapsed but before the animal has been adopted or euthanized, the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound:

      (1)  shall, in the case of a cat or dog, release 1[it] the cat or dog1 to the owner or person charged with 1[its] the animal's1 care, provided the owner or person charged with the care of the animal provides proof of ownership, which may include a valid cat or dog license, registration, rabies inoculation certificate, or documentation from the owner's veterinarian that the cat or dog has received regular care from that veterinarian;

      (2)  may, in the case of a cat or dog, charge the cost of sterilizing the cat or dog, if the owner requests such sterilizing when claiming 1[it] the  cat or dog1; and

      (3)  may require the owner or person charged with the care of the animal to pay all the animal's expenses while in the care of the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound, not to exceed $4 per day.

      h.   If the animal remains unclaimed, is not claimed due to the failure of the owner or other person to comply with the requirements of this section, or is not adopted after seven days after the date on which notice is served pursuant to subsection c. of this section or, if no notice can be served, not less than seven days after the date on which the animal was impounded, the impounded animal may be placed in a foster home, transferred to another shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility, or euthanized in a manner causing as little pain as possible and consistent with the provisions of R.S.4:22-19.

      i.    At the time of adoption, the right of ownership in the animal shall transfer to the new owner.  Prior to releasing any cat or dog to the person assuming ownership, the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound, if the cat or dog has not been spayed or neutered, shall:

      (1)  spay or neuter the cat or dog as required pursuant to section 1 of P.L.    , c.    (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill); or

      (2)  pay the person assuming ownership of the cat or dog an amount equal to the cost of spaying or neutering the cat or dog up to $250.

      No dog or other animal taken into custody, impounded, sent or otherwise brought to a shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound shall be sold or otherwise be made available for the purpose of experimentation.  Any person who sells or otherwise makes available any such dog or other animal for the purpose of experimentation shall be guilty of a crime of the fourth degree.

      j.    Any animal seized under this section suspected of being rabid shall be immediately reported to the executive officer of the local board of health and to the Department of Health, and shall be quarantined, observed, and otherwise handled and dealt with as appropriate for an animal suspected of being rabid or as required by the Department of Health for the animals.

      k.   When a certified animal control officer takes into custody and impounds, or causes to be taken into custody and impounded, an animal, the certified animal control officer may place the animal in the custody of, or cause the animal to be placed in the custody of, only a licensed shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound.  The certified animal control officer may not place the animal in the custody of, or cause the animal to be placed in the custody of, any animal rescue organization facility, foster home, or other unlicensed facility.  However, the licensed shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound may place the animal in an animal rescue organization facility, foster home, or other unlicensed facility if necessary pursuant to subsection e. or h. of this section.

      l.    Notwithstanding the provisions of this section and sections 3 and 4 of P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.30 and C.4:19-15.31) to the contrary, no cat or dog being transferred between shelters, pounds, or kennels operating as shelters or pounds, or being transferred to an animal rescue organization facility or placed in a foster home, shall be required to be sterilized prior to that transfer.

(cf:  P.L.2012, c.17, s.7)

 

     1[3.  Section 6 of P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.33) is amended to read as follows:

     6. a. The Department of Health shall establish a registry of animal rescue organizations and their facilities in the State.  [Any] Within 180 days after the effective date of P.L.   , c.      (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), each animal rescue organization [may voluntarily participate in the registry] shall register with the department.

     b.    The department, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), may adopt any rules and regulations determined necessary to implement the [voluntary] registry and coordinate its use with the provisions of section 1 of P.L.   , c.   (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.30 et al.), and section 16 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.16).

(cf:  P.L.2012, c.17, s.13)]1

 

      13. Section 6 of P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.33) is amended to read as follows:

      6.   a.  The Department of Health shall establish a registry of animal rescue organizations and their facilities in the State.  Any animal rescue organization may voluntarily participate in the registry until the 180th day after the effective date of P.L.    , c.    (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), upon which the registration of animal rescue organizations shall be mandatory.  Each animal rescue organization shall register annually with the department and annually report the number of cats and dogs sold, adopted, bartered, exchanged, or transferred in the preceding calendar year by the animal rescue organization, and to whom the cats and dogs were sold, released for adoption, bartered, exchanged, or transferred.  The annual registration fee shall be $25.

      b.   The department, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), may adopt any rules and regulations determined necessary to implement the [voluntary] registry and coordinate its use with the provisions of section 1 of P.L. , c.    (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill),  P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.30 et al.), and section 16 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.16).

      c.   Any person required to register with the department pursuant to this section who fails to do so shall be subject to a civil penalty of up to $1,000, to be collected by the Department of Health in a civil action by a summary proceeding under the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).  The Superior Court and municipal courts shall have jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999" pursuant to this subsection.  For second or subsequent violations, at the discretion of the court, the person may also be suspended or permanently prohibited from operating as an animal rescue organization in the State.1

(cf:  P.L.2012, c.17, s.13)

 

     4.  Section 6 of P.L.1983, c.172 (C.4:19A-5) is amended to read as follows:

     6.  a.  The commissioner may solicit and accept funds from any public or private source to help carry out the provisions of P.L.1983, c.172 (C.4:19A-1 et al.) . 

     b.  All fees collected pursuant to section 1 of P.L.1983, c.172 (C.4:19-15.3b) and sections 3 and 4 of P.L.1983, c.172 (C.43:19A-2 and C.4:19A-3), all moneys from the application and renewal fees collected for animal welfare license plates issued pursuant to P.L.1993, c.184 (C.39:3-27.55 et seq.), all penalty moneys collected pursuant to subsection c. of section 1 of P.L.    , c.   (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill, and all moneys received pursuant to subsection a. of this section, shall be placed in a special fund to be known as the "Animal Population Control Fund," which shall be separate from the General State Fund.  All moneys in the "Animal Population Control Fund" shall be used by the commissioner exclusively for the implementation and promotion of the program and for the costs associated with the administration of P.L.1983, c.172 (C.4:19A-1 et al.), except as provided in subsection c. of this section.

     c.  Moneys deposited into the fund generated by the collection of application fees for animal welfare license plates issued pursuant to P.L.1993, c.184 (C.39:3-27.55 et seq.) shall be utilized by the commissioner to reimburse the Division of Motor Vehicles for all costs incurred by the division, as certified by the director, of producing, issuing, renewing, and publicizing the availability of animal welfare license plates.

     No moneys deposited in the "Animal Population Control Fund," established in subsection b. of this section, except for the moneys generated by the collection of application fees for animal welfare license plates issued pursuant to P.L.1993, c.184 (C.39:3-27.55 et seq.), shall be utilized by the Department of Health or the Division of Motor Vehicles for any expenses, administrative or otherwise, related to the animal welfare license plates, or the advertising and publicizing thereof, including, but not limited to notices, posters and signs to be circulated or posted by the department or the division.

     d.  The director shall annually certify to the commissioner the average cost per license plate incurred in the immediately preceding year by the division in producing, issuing, renewing, and publicizing the availability of animal welfare license plates.  The annual certification of the average cost per license plate shall be approved by the Joint Budget Oversight Committee, or its successor.

     e.  In the event that the average cost per license plate as certified by the director and approved by the Joint Budget Oversight Committee, or its successor, is greater than the $50 application fee established in subsection b. of section 1 of P.L.1993, c.184 (C.39:3-27.55) in two consecutive fiscal years, the director may discontinue the issuance of animal welfare license plates.

(cf:  P.L.1995, c.145, s.3)

 

     5.  This act shall take effect immediately.

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