During Georgia’s 2018 legislative session the retail puppy mill industry (mainly led by Petland, the pet store chain) hired expensive lobbyists to push for special protections that would have stripped local governments of their ability to regulate the sale of cruelly bred dogs in their communities. However, Georgia’s lawmakers stood their ground for humane animal treatment by rejecting S.B. 418/H.B. 928 and repeated attempts by Petland to attach these amendments to other bills. With State Senator Renee Unterman leading the charge, the Georgia Senate rejected S.B. 418 by a resounding 34-19 vote. With the Senate defeat looming large, the bill’s companion, H.B. 948 did not even receive a House hearing.
Thank you Senator Unterman and the Georgia Senate!
BUT, the industry didn’t stop there… In the final days of the session, it was learned that lobbyists were attempting to amend their language onto bills related to housing and veterinary medicine. With a state wide coalition and huge support from our animal protection lobbyists, we were able to defeat all three of the industry’s attempts to pass state bills that would have rolled back progress in Georgia toward stopping pupy mill cruelty. The bills would have invalidated the laws of eight Georgia municipalities designed to keep pets sourced from this cruel industry out of their local pet stores. Over 250 localities across the nation have enacted similar laws.
HB 253: PASSED as an amendment to HB695.
LINK TO BILL - HB 253
To restore funding to original Spay/Neuter tag.
Sincere thanks to Humane Association of GA, who led the original campaign to establish spay/neuter license tags, and worked diligently to restore full funding for Spay/Neuter grants that had been diminished over the years. GA Department of Agriculture will now be able to provide more grants to GA Shelters and Rescue Groups.
HB 419: PASSED
To allow local governments to dial back the hours that fireworks are allowed.
You can now work on local ordinances to minimize the dates and times that fireworks can be set off. Must be coordinated with your local noise ordinance.