Relates to public safety and big cats; prohibits contact with big cats.
Ayes (56): Addabbo, Avella, Boyle, Breslin, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Espaillat, Farley, Felder, Flanagan, Gallivan, Gianaris, Gipson, Griffo, Grisanti, Hannon, Hoylman, Kennedy, Klein, Krueger, Lanza, Larkin, Latimer, LaValle, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Marchione, Martins, Maziarz, Montgomery, Nozzolio, O'Brien, O'Mara, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Ritchie, Rivera, Robach, Sampson, Sanders, Savino, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Squadron, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousins, Tkaczyk, Valesky, Young, Zeldin
Nays (2): Ball, Bonacic
Excused (3): Golden, Hassell-Thomps, Smith
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the environmental conservation law, in relation to public safety and big cats
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
The purpose of this bill is to protect animal caretakers, those inter-acting with wild animals, bystanders and the animals themselves by preventing direct contact between wild animals and members of the public.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section one amends the environmental conservation law by adding a new section 11-0538. Section two sets forth the effective date.
In New York and throughout the United States, several roadside zoo exhibitors and traveling menageries allow members of the public to hold take photos with, and otherwise interact with wild animals in roadside zoos, fairgrounds, malls and other public areas. This activity severely harms the welfare of the animals, endangers the public, and is a heavy burden on law enforcement.
This activity also requires an ongoing supply of young animals. Infant animals are prematurely separated from their mothers to be groomed for human handling, often die due to constant handling and travel, and are even subjected to abusive training and painful declawing or deranging procedures in a futile attempt to make them safe for public contact once they mature. After the animals grow too big for handling, they are held on leashes with no protective barriers. Often they are dumped and sent to substandard facilities.
There is no safe or humane result when direct contact with wild animals is allowed. Other states, including Kansas, Mississippi, and Arizona, have strengthened existing laws to address public contact issues.
This legislation is narrowly crafted to prohibit direct physical contact between members of the public and captive wild animals as defined in subdivision 6 (e) of section 11-0103 of the New York Environmental Conservation Law. This bill would not impact exhibition of captive animals or restrict veterinary examination, treatment and care, or transportation deemed necessary. In addition, the bill specifically does not apply to zoos or aquariums accredited by the association of zoos & aquariums (AZA).
2013-2014 Assembly A9004(Rosenthal)
Yet to be determined.
This act shall take effect on the one hundred and eightieth day after it shall have become a law.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 6903--C Cal. No. 625 IN SENATE March 27, 2014 ___________Introduced by Sens. AVELLA, KRUEGER -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Environmental Conservation -- reported favorably from said committee, ordered to first report, amended on first report, ordered to a second report and ordered reprinted, retaining its place in the order of second report -- ordered to a third reading, amended and ordered reprinted, retain- ing its place in the order of third reading -- passed by Senate and delivered to the Assembly, recalled, vote reconsidered, restored to third reading, amended and ordered reprinted, retaining its place in the order of third reading AN ACT to amend the environmental conservation law, in relation to public safety and big cats THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The environmental conservation law is amended by adding a new section 11-0538 to read as follows: S 11-0538. DIRECT CONTACT BETWEEN PUBLIC AND BIG CATS PROHIBITED. 1. AS USED IN THIS SECTION: (A) "BIG CAT" SHALL MEAN ANY LIVE SPECIES OF LION (PANTHERA LEO), TIGER (PANTHERA TIGRES), LEOPARD (PANTHERA PARDUS) (WITH THE EXCEPTION OF CLOUDED LEOPARDS (NEOFELIS NEBULOSA)), JAGUAR (PANTHERA ONCA), MOUN- TAIN LION, SOMETIMES CALLED COUGAR (FELIS CONCOLAR) OR ANY HYBRID OF SUCH SPECIES. (B) "DIRECT CONTACT" MEANS PHYSICAL CONTACT OR PROXIMITY WHERE PHYS- ICAL CONTACT IS POSSIBLE, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, ALLOWING A PHOTOGRAPH TO BE TAKEN WITHOUT A PERMANENT PHYSICAL BARRIER DESIGNED TO PREVENT PHYSICAL CONTACT BETWEEN THE PUBLIC AND BIG CATS. (C) "DEALER" SHALL MEAN ANY PERSON WHO, IN COMMERCE, FOR COMPENSATION OR PROFIT, DELIVERS FOR TRANSPORTATION, OR TRANSPORTS, EXCEPT AS A CARRIER, BUYS, SELLS, OR NEGOTIATES THE PURCHASE OR SALE OF ANY ANIMALS. (D) "EXHIBITOR" SHALL MEAN ANY PERSON (PUBLIC OR PRIVATE) EXHIBITING ANY ANIMALS, WHICH WERE PURCHASED IN COMMERCE OR THE INTENDED DISTRIB- UTION OF WHICH AFFECTS COMMERCE, OR WILL AFFECT COMMERCE, TO THE PUBLIC FOR COMPENSATION, AS DETERMINED BY THE COMMISSIONER, AND SUCH TERMEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD14190-10-4 S. 6903--C 2
INCLUDES CARNIVALS, CIRCUSES, AND ZOOS EXHIBITING SUCH ANIMALS WHETHER OPERATED FOR PROFIT OR NOT. 2. IT SHALL BE UNLAWFUL FOR ANY PERSON LICENSED OR REQUIRED TO BE LICENSED AS AN EXHIBITOR OR DEALER PURSUANT TO THE ANIMAL WELFARE ACT, 7 USC 2132-2134, INCLUDING AGENTS OR EMPLOYEES OF SUCH PERSON, TO KNOWING- LY ALLOW THE PUBLIC TO HAVE DIRECT CONTACT WITH A BIG CAT. 3. ANY PERSON WHO VIOLATES THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION SHALL BE SUBJECT TO A PENALTY OF NOT MORE THAN FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS FOR THE FIRST OFFENSE AND NOT MORE THAN ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS FOR A SECOND AND SUBSE- QUENT OFFENSES. EACH INSTANCE OF ALLOWING DIRECT CONTACT OF A BIG CAT WITH THE PUBLIC IN VIOLATION OF THIS SECTION SHALL CONSTITUTE A SEPARATE OFFENSE. 4. NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO LIMIT OR RESTRICT VETERINARY EXAMINATION, TREATMENT OR CARE OF A BIG CAT OR TRANSPORTATION OF THE ANIMAL FOR SUCH PURPOSE. S 2. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after it shall have become a law.