On January 14th of the current year, District 66A Representative John Lesch ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) and Representative of District 64B Michael Paymar ( email@example.com ) introduced a bill that would require owners or those individuals identified as owners of ‘dangerous or potentially dangerous dogs” to participate in responsible dog ownership classes. Additional information on this bill indicates that yet again the government is insinuating itself into the affairs of the people without truly addressing the needs of the community at large.
You may have to copy and paste the above link.
I have taken the liberty of posting the whole sordid mess here:
H.F. No. 115, as introduced – 86th Legislative Session (2009-2010) Posted on Jan 14, 2009
1.1A bill for an act
1.2relating to dogs; requiring certain dog owners to take responsible dog owner
1.3classes and pass certain tests; requiring maintenance of a database; proposing
1.4coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 347.
1.5BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:
1.6 Section 1. [347.57] DEFINITIONS.
1.7 Subdivision 1. Applicability. The definitions in this section apply to sections
1.8347.57 to 347.67.
1.9 Subd. 2. Animal control authority. “Animal control authority” means an agency of
1.10the state, county, municipality, or other governmental subdivision of the state which is
1.11responsible for animal control operations in its jurisdiction.
1.12 Subd. 3. Class training manual. “Class training manual” means the materials used
1.13to train the facilitator and the materials used by facilitators to train the dog owner.
1.14 Subd. 4. Dog owner. “Dog owner” means the owner of a dog that has been declared
1.15dangerous or potentially dangerous.
1.16 Subd. 5. Facilitator. “Facilitator” means a person who teaches the responsible dog
1.17owner class and administers the test to the dog owner.
1.18 Subd. 6. Program manager. “Program manager” means the person who oversees
1.19and coordinates the responsible dog owner class, trains the facilitators, and handles
1.20recordkeeping of the classes.
1.21 Subd. 7. Responsible dog owner class. “Responsible dog owner class” means a
1.22class for owners of dogs that have been declared dangerous or potentially dangerous
1.23under section 347.50.
2.1 Sec. 2. [347.58] RESPONSIBLE DOG OWNER CLASS.
2.2(a) The owner of a dog that has been declared dangerous or potentially dangerous
2.3under section 347.50 must take and pass the responsible dog owner class lasting
2.4approximately four hours. A photo identification of the dog owner is required at the time
2.5of the class to confirm ownership of the dog. The dog owner must enroll in a class within
2.630 days of the dog being declared potentially dangerous or dangerous. The dog owner
2.7must attend the class at the next scheduled class date. The class is for the owner of the
2.8dog only; dogs are not allowed in the class.
2.9(b) Dog owners who own dogs that were previously declared dangerous must
2.10take the responsible dog owner class. The dog owner must attend the class at the next
2.11scheduled class date after the effective date of this section.
2.12(c) The Department of Public Safety must charge the dog owner a reasonable fee for
2.13attending the class.
2.14 Sec. 3. [347.59] PROGRAM MANAGER.
2.15(a) The program manager must be:
2.16(1) a veterinarian in good standing in Minnesota with a minimum of three years
2.18(2) a person with a minimum of five years experience working in an animal-related
2.19field, including knowledge and training of dog behavior and education of the public on
2.21(b) A background check must be performed on a person applying to be a program
2.22manager. The applicant must pass the background check without any violations prior to
2.23being appointed. No person who has been convicted of animal cruelty under Minnesota
2.24law or any other state law may be a program manager.
2.25(c) The Department of Public Safety shall employ the program manager and
2.26determine how much the program manager shall be paid for providing program manager
2.28 Sec. 4. [347.60] FACILITATOR.
2.29A facilitator must have a minimum of five years experience in dog training or in
2.30educating the public on dog behavior. A background check must be performed on a
2.31facilitator and a facilitator must pass the background check without any violations prior to
2.32that person being appointed and trained. No person who has been convicted of animal
2.33cruelty under Minnesota law or any other state law may be a facilitator. A facilitator must
2.34receive retraining by the program manager every three years to remain a facilitator.
3.1 Sec. 5. [347.61] TRAINING.
3.2Ongoing training must be provided by the program manager to facilitators, including
3.3updating the class training manual and teaching facilitators current information.
3.4 Sec. 6. [347.62] ANIMAL CONTROL AUTHORITY DUTIES.
3.5The animal control authority that declares a dog dangerous or potentially dangerous
3.6must provide the following information to the program manager and the Department of
3.8(1) name, address, and telephone number of the dog owner;
3.9(2) description of the dog;
3.10(3) a tracking number to identify the case; and
3.11(4) any other pertinent information.
3.12 Sec. 7. [347.63] NOTIFICATION.
3.13The program manager must send a written notification to the owners of dogs
3.14declared dangerous or potentially dangerous that they must register for a class within 30
3.15days, how to register for the class, and any other pertinent information.
3.16 Sec. 8. [347.64] CLASS TRAINING MANUAL; FORMS; CURRICULUM; TEST.
3.17(a) The class training manual and curriculum must address the basic needs of the
3.18dog, both behavioral and physical, and include education on dog care and dog behavior.
3.19The class training manual, forms, test, and curriculum must be prepared in consultation
3.20with a study commission and printed by the Department of Public Safety.
3.21(b) Upon completion of the responsible dog owner class, a facilitator must administer
3.22a multiple choice test to the dog owner and grade the test. A dog owner who fails the
3.23test must retake the test within two weeks.
3.24(c) If the owner of a dog declared dangerous fails the test twice, the animal control
3.25authority must seize the animal and provide for disposition of the animal pursuant to
3.26sections 347.54 and 347.541.
3.27(d) If the owner of a dog declared potentially dangerous fails the test twice, the
3.28animal control authority must make the determination as to disposition of the dog.
3.29(e) If a dog owner fails to register for a responsible dog owner class or fails to appear
3.30for the class and take the test, the dog owner must be considered as having failed the test.
3.31(f) A facilitator must provide a certificate of class completion to a dog owner upon
3.32successfully passing the test. A facilitator must forward a verification of completion or
3.33non-completion form and the tests to the program manager. The program manager must
4.1verify the information and forward it to the animal control authority and the Department
4.2of Public Safety.
4.3 Sec. 9. [347.65] LOCATION OF CLASS.
4.4Responsible dog owner classes must be offered to dog owners at locations
4.5determined by the program manager on a quarterly basis, as needed.
4.6 Sec. 10. [347.66] TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP.
4.7If ownership of a dangerous or potentially dangerous dog is transferred to another
4.8person, the new owner must take a responsible dog owner class and pass the test.
4.9 Sec. 11. [347.67] STATEWIDE RECORDS; REPORTING; DATABASE.
4.10A database must be maintained by the Department of Public Safety containing
4.11records of all dogs in Minnesota declared potentially dangerous or dangerous, and
4.12owner information, including any convictions for violations of section 347.51; 347.515;
4.13347.56; 609.205, subdivision 4; or 609.226, subdivision 1 or 2; and any dogs owned
4.14by that person that have been ordered destroyed under section 347.56, as well as other
4.15information pertinent to enforcement of sections 347.50 to 347.565. The database must
4.16also contain information regarding the test results of the responsible dog owner class.
4.17The commissioner of public safety, in consultation with animal control professionals,
4.18must determine what information will be kept in this database. This database must be
4.19accessible, only for purposes of law enforcement, to all police and sheriff departments
4.20and other local government departments responsible for conducting or overseeing animal
4.21control operations in their jurisdictions, with the exception that private animal control
4.22authorities contracted to local government agencies may only access these records
4.23through, and with the permission of, those local government agencies. All Minnesota law
4.24enforcement agencies and animal control authorities must report in a timely manner to the
4.25Department of Public Safety any information required under this section.
4.26 Sec. 12. EFFECTIVE DATE.
4.27Sections 1, 3 to 6, 9, and 11 are effective the day following final enactment. Sections
4.282, 7, 8, and 10 are effective six months after that day.
This bill was introduced one week prior to the State of New York bill that I had addressed last week.
It would seem to me that the lawmakers might want to consider enforcing their existing laws as opposed to this dreck which has absolutely no provisions for what constitutes responsible ownership, who makes that determination and who is responsible for the selection criterion for “Program Managers”, “Facilitators” or what constitutes appropriate curricula?
A state pronouncement does not extol one with the necessary virtues of either the actual training of a dog, nor the skills necessary for the instruction of a dog’s training.
What are these people smoking?