2020 LEGISLATIVE UPDATE for the GEORGIA GENERAL ASSEMBLY
The GA General Assembly was suspended in mid-March due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It reconvened on June 15 and concluded 11 days later.
Three companion animal bills passed overwhelmingly in the GA Senate:
SB 338 Breeder Surety/Background Check bill passed with a 43-3 vote.
SB 468 Veterans/Service Animals Bill passed with a 49-1 vote.
SB 476 Microchip Bill passed with a 43-9 vote.
Horse racing and pari-mutuel betting, which languished as part of a broader casino/gambling bill in March, was reintroduced with new language as House Resolution (HR) 841 in June. In a win for both horses and taxpayers, HR 841 did not make it to the House floor for a vote.
Fortunately, pet store industry lobbyists did not attempt to pass a bill or amendment that would have overturned local ordinances prohibiting the retail sale of puppy and kittens in pet stores. Georgia has 11 such ordinances and nationally there are 357. Please continue to tell your state lawmakers that you support the authority of city/county governments to regulate unethical business practices that imperil public health and contribute to local pet overpopulation.
THANKS to all advocates who contacted their State Senators and Representatives to urge support for SB 338, SB 468, and SB 476 and opposition to HR 841.
Unite with GPC to be the voice for companion animals at the GA Capitol! The GPC is nonpartisan and provides learning opportunities for companion animal advocates.
Breeder Surety/Background Check Requirement bill, sponsored by Senator Kay Kirkpatrick
SB 338 would make it harder for puppy mills to operate in Georgia by requiring a financial assurance bond and background check
Veteran/Service Animals bill, sponsored by Senator Renee Unterman
SB 468 is a Return to Owner bill that would require animal shelters to accept registration of veterans' service dog
Breeder Microchip Requirement bill, sponsored by Senator Kay Kirkpatrick
SB 476 would require Pet Dealers to microchip their dogs and cats.
SB 886 would require veterinarians to scan animals for microchips to verify ownership, alert law enforcement if necessary and receive immunity when testifying in court proceedings.
This bill is endorsed by the Georgia Veterinary Medical Association.
Did not make it to the House for a vote.
Horse racing and pari-mutuel betting, which languished as part of a broader casino/gambling bill in March, was reintroduced with new language as House Resolution (HR) 841 in June.