March 1 Environment Hearing

ALERT:  Environment Committee hearing on Friday March 1 to hear testimony for bills on CVA’s priority list.

This is your chance to let the Committee know that animal issues are important to Connecticut residents

Speak up for animals either by:

  • testifying at the hearing on Friday, March 1 at the Legislative Office Building, Room 2B at 10:30 a.m, or
  • submitting a written statement via email to envtestimony@cga.ct.gov no later than Thursday, February 28 by 3:00 p.m. in order for it to be available to the Environment Committee on Friday (be sure to include your name and town in the statement). 

Your testimony or written statement should be a brief note of support for or opposition to these bills or if you have a personal experience you can share your personal reasons about why these bills are important to you. 

 SUPPORT  HB 5386 Prohibit the sale or transfer of dogs, cats and rabbits at pet shops that are not from animal welfare organizations. It is time to end Connecticut’s participation in the sale of animals from cruel and inhumane commercial breeding facilities (puppy mills). Connecticut residents love their pets and they would be horrified to see the conditions and treatment of animals in these commercial breeding facilities. Pet stores do not need to sell dogs, cats or rabbits to be successful.  This is evidenced by the overwhelming majority of CT pet stores, small mom-and-pop shops and large nationwide stores such as Petsmart, Petco, Pet Value that all have successful business models.  Encouraging pet stores to partner with legitimate shelters and rescues promotes adoption and reduces the import of puppies from mills, and animals from other commercial breeding facilities.  CVA strongly recommends that safeguards be added to HB 5386 to ensure successful partnerships with legitimate rescues.    California and Maryland have banned the sale of commercially-raised dogs and cats (and rabbits in CA) in pet stores, as have over 290 localities across the nation; Connecticut should do the same. 

OPPOSE SB 586 Authorizing Black Bear Hunting in Litchfield County.  Multiple scientific studies have shown that hunting will not help alleviate human-bear conflicts or make people safer. The solution is public education, which is both more effective and humane.   A Bear Hunt is out of step with the majority of Connecticut Residents.  It’s time to reverse the trend and give back the land to the majority of residents who want to enjoy the wilderness in harmony with nature. More than 1.2 million residents participate in wildlife watching, a number that has grown exponentially. Wildlife watchers bring in over $935 million to the State’s economy.  In contrast, the number of hunters has been steadily decreasing representing less than 1 percent of the State’s population.  The Committee's efforts to investigate the non-lethal management of black bears (SB 894) should be applauded and recognizes that education is the solution.  A comprehensive and rigorous public education program should be encouraged which includes learning about removal of food attractants, conflict prevention strategies, understanding bear behavior, and best practices from successful programs in other States.

 

SUPPORT SB 594 Prohibit Certain Contracts for the Purchase of a Dog or Cat  This bill stops pet stores from offering leasing/loan arrangements to purchase dogs or cats that consider the animal as security for payment.  Several CT pet stores offer these types of financing schemes.  SB 594 prevents a predatory practice that allows companies to take dogs and cats out of loving families that cannot afford the excessive and often unexpected costs that come from these unscrupulous schemes.  These contracts can end up costing consumers double or triple the advertised cost of the animal. The bill will align Connecticut with other states, like New York, California and Nevada, that have enacted legislation to protect consumers and our loving pets.

SUPPORT HB 6014 Prohibit the Use of Leghold and Body Crushing Traps:   Remove the use of Steel-jaw leghold traps, body-crushing Conibear traps from the arsenal of equipment available to hunters.  These traps are known for their undeniably cruel manner of maiming and killing animals and also ensnaring household pets and unintended wildlife, leaving wildlife, the public and pets at risk of needless and unjustifiable suffering.  

Please let the Environment Committee know that you care about animals.  CT's animals are depending on you.