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Subject: Texas BSL

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Date Posted: 14:17:21 05/02/05 Mon

This is the latest plea for help before it's too late:

Nationwide Action Alert!
Texas HB 1096/ SB 1111 - BSL Threat
"One More Time!" We need your help to keep the senate bill from being heard in committee.

May 1, 2005
Please cross post!

HB 1096 passed the House before we could organize opposition, but to date there has been NO Senate hearing scheduled for the companion bill SB 1111.

We were told by Committee Chair Senator Whitmire's office that they have been overwhelmed with phone calls in opposition to SB 1111, but the calls have slowed down. We appreciate your previous help and ask if we could have "one more round" of protests to help us kill this bill. You may be very brief. Just the large volume of calls and emails can help us tremendously.

You may receive Senator Ellis's form letter saying that his office is working with Responsible Pet Owners Alliance and the American Kennel Club regarding this bill. Although RPOA was contacted regarding our objections and sent our objections to his office, we have heard nothing from them. So I wouldn't say we are negotiating. Rather it appears they hope the opposition will die down and the bill could slip through committee with 24 hrs. notice.

HB 1096 / SB 1111 would exempt Houston from existing state law prohibiting Breed Specific Legislation and imposes excessively harsh provisions on all Houston dog owners.

Our legislature adjourns on May 31, so there will be increased pressure to schedule a hearing on this bill to move it out of committee.

SB 1111 states that: Subchapter D [in existing state law] does not apply to a municipality subject to this chapter. While not naming breeds specifically, it will allow Houston to do so in the future.

Talking Points:

* SB 1111 will not stop dog attacks in Houston.

* Texas already has a very strong Dangerous Dog Law.

* Texas, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma and Virginia all have a provision prohibiting municipalities from passing Breed Specific Legislation. SB 1111 would be taking a step backwards for Texas.

* Breed Specific Legislation is canine profiling and discrimination against certain breeds of dogs, regardless of temperament, training or behavior. Many so-called pitbulls are great family dogs and pose no threat to the community.

* Although SB 1111 doesnt name breeds of dogs, the publicly stated intent of Rep. Al Edwards is to regulate Rottweilers and pitbulls in Houston.

* Rep. Edwards has stated on a Houston television station that he wants the bill to be amended to apply statewide.

Please contact all listed below and OPPOSE this bill:
Mailing address for all Senate Committee members:

PO Box 12068
Capitol Station
Austin, TX 78711

Clerk: Carley Rose, Ph: (512) 463-0345

SB 1111
Bill Author: Senator Rodney Ellis
Ph: (512) 463-0113
Fax: (512) 463-0006

Senate Criminal Justice Committee members:
Chair: Senator John Whitmire
Ph: (512) 463-0115
Fax: (512) 475-3737

Vice-Chair: Senator Kel Seliger
Ph: (512) 463-0131
Fax: (512) 475-3733

Senator John Carona
Ph: (512) 463-0116
Fax: (512) 463-3135

Senator Rodney Ellis
Ph: (512) 463-0113
Fax: (512) 463-0006

Senator Juan Hinojosa
Ph: (512) 463-0120
Fax: (512) 463-0229

Senator Steve Ogden
Ph: (512) 463-0105
Fax: (512) 463-5713

Senator Tommy Williams
Ph: (512) 463-0104
Fax: (512) 463-6373

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