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February 2023 Newsletter
Gina (left) and Tora were the hit of the public hearing at the State Capitol last week on legislation to permanently ban greyhound racing in CT. They were accompanied by their advocates (from left) Grey2K USA President Christine Dorchak, Michelle Torello (right) along with Rep. Nicole Klarides-Ditria R-105 (center).
The 2023 General Assembly session is off to a fast start with more than a dozen animal-related bills on the docket. CVA's Executive Director Jo-Ane Basile and several CVA Board & Advisory Council members, provided testimony on bills which had public hearings earlier this month. To read their statements, click on the links below. You can keep up on all the bills we're tracking and testifying at future hearings by clicking on our website.
HB 6615: An Act Concerning Dog Racing would close the loophole in CT statutes and ban greyhound dog racing in the state. While CT's greyhound racing tracks closed in 2005, under current law there is nothing stopping new dog tracks from opening.
SB 962: An Act Concerning the Use of Certain Rodenticides would ban the use of second-generation anticoagulant rodenticides with some exceptions for public health activities. These rodent poisons kill more than their intended target including raptors and other wildlife which ingest contaminated prey.
HB 5575: An Act Requiring the Dept. of Agriculture to Revise Municipal Shelter Regulations to protect shelter animals and bring temperature requirements in line with private shelters and kennels.
HB 6635: An Act Concerning Dog Breed Discrimination in Homeowners Policies would prohibit prejudice against certain dog breeds when writing homeowners or renters insurance policies. Now, many people are forced to give up their pets, pay an extra premium, or go without insurance.
SB 53: An Act Requiring Veterinarians to Report Cases of Suspected Aggravated Animal Cruelty would grant immunity to veterinarians when they report suspected cases of cruelty including animals involved in dog fighting.
Keep an eye out for CVA Alerts on future hearings and the opportunity to testify and Speak Up for Animals.
Other Important Animal Issues to Watch
There will be public hearings on additional CVA priority issues in March. You'll receive CVA Alerts in advance encouraging you to send in a statement of support. The annual debate over bear hunting will have a hearing no later than March 20. The Environment Committee has a broad proposal which may include a bear hunt and a ban on intentional feeding of black bears. Specific legislative language and a bill number will be available by the end of February.
HB 6714: An Act Concerning Cruelty to Animals has three parts: to expand the definition of sexual assault of animals; to require a ban on possessing animals for those convicted of animal cruelty; and a mandatory requirement for veterinarians to report cases of suspected cruelty to animals.
SB 1060 – An Act Concerning the Appointment of an Advocate in Proceedings Concerning the Welfare or Custody of Animals would expand “Desmond’s Law” to include not just dogs and cats but all animals. The measure would allow a court advocate to be appointed in cases of animal abuse and cruelty.
HB 5123: An Act Concerning the Use of Certain Animals in Traveling Animal Acts would prohibit certain wild and exoctic animals from circuses and traveling animal shows. A public hearing is scheduled for February 27.
Unfortunately, the Environment Committee chose not to hold a public hearing on HB 5572 AA Concerning the Sale of Dogs, Cats and Rabbits in Pet Shops. While we are very disappointed by this decision we will not give up. We'll continue the fight next year to stop the puppy mill pipeline to CT pet shops.
To see the entire list of bills CVA is tracking and the testimony given, follow this link to CVA's website.
CVA Extends Its Reach With Regional Advocacy Captains
As part of an initiative to expand our supporter base throughout the state, CVA has identified a number of enthusiastic advocates who will serve as “regional captains” in five distinct regions around the state.
The regional captains are working with staff to determine the most effective methods of recruiting. They are also getting up to speed on bills before the legislature this session so they can share that knowledge with animal advocates in their areas. Please answer the call if a regional captain contacts you; get involved in the legislative process and SPEAK UP FOR ANIMALS!
Welcome to the Newest CVA Board Member!
Anne Foley is a retired social worker with more than thirty years of experience as a Connecticut state government policymaking developing and implementing administrative and legislative policies, programs, and initiatives in the areas of health and human services. As an adjunct lecturer at the UConn School of Social Work, she has also taught classes on social welfare policy analysis, political advocacy, program evaluation, macro practice, research, and human behavior in the social environment.
Anne's volunteer roles include membership on the board of directors of Chrysalis Center, a gubernatorial appointee to the Tobacco and Health Trust Fund board, and co-chair of the Homemakers and Companions Task Force. She lives in West Hartford with her spouse Tom, dog Maurice, and cat Johnny.
CVA Speaks to Connecticut dog about
New Protections for 'Outside Dogs'
Whether its blustery cold or scorching hot there's now a law in place to protect dogs who are left outside. CT’s new law now requires that dogs must be protected with adequate shelter, clearly defined in the statute, if left outside during extreme weather conditions. The new protections build on the state's tethering law and applies not only to National Weather Service declarations but also when adverse outdoor environmental conditions pose a risk to the dog’s health or safety, based on the dog’s breed, size, age, coat thickness, or physical condition.
The statutory changes give animal control officers better tools for enforcement, and opportunities to work with homeowners before a situation becomes life threatening for the dog and subject to animal cruelty charges. Read more about the law in this article in the Winter 2022 issue of Connecticut Dog Magazine.
Vegan Crab Cakes With Dill Remoulade
This lighter version of crab cakes are filled with healthy, plant-based ingredients – and they’re baked, not fried. They’re even better accompanied with a creamy remoulade. Find the recipe here.
Remember to share your favorite vegan recipe. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.