Join Us as a Voice for Animals

BREAKING NEWS:
The punishment will NOW fit the crime, thanks to you!

It is a GREAT day for pets in Arizona. Your calls, emails and outreach to state elected officials made a significant impact! The Arizona House of Representatives just passed HB2671 (42 yays – 18 nays) and now, the bill heads to the Governor’s Desk for his signature!

This victory means that animal abusers will face stronger penalties in the worst cases of abuse – the ones where abusers intentionally and knowingly inflict cruel mistreatment. It means that bad people will be held accountable for their heinous acts and justice will be served. It means the punishment will finally fit the crime. It means that your voice mattered. This victory is a direct reflection of your advocacy. The Arizona Humane Society has worked tirelessly over the last four years to pass this bill. Today marks a milestone.

This new law will make a real difference in our community. Every day, our emergency animal rescue team and trauma hospital see horrific cases of cruelty and neglect. Last year alone, our team responded to more than 7,400 cruelty investigations. Only the most egregious, gut-wrenching few lead to prosecution. The vast majority of animal abusers received an embarrassingly inadequate charge, often pleading to a misdemeanor without jail time or probation. Until today, that is.

We thank Representative Kavanagh who served as the bill sponsor and champion, Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery for his leadership and our Humane Legislative and animal welfare partners who rallied with us.

But most importantly, we thank you.

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We thank you for joining us as the voice for animals.

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STATE INITIATIVES


Strike-all amendment to HB2671

The list of acts constituting cruelty to animals would be expanded to include intentionally or knowingly subjecting a domestic animal (one kept primarily as a pet or companion) to cruel mistreatment or intentionally killing an animal without legal privilege or consent of the owner. Punishment for animal abuse would be a category 5 (second-lowest) felony. This amendment is pending passage by the Senate Commerce Committee. Arizona Humane Society and the Humane Legislative Coalition of Arizona strongly support HB2671. 

HB2329: pet dealers; purchaser remedies

The bill offers protection for people who buy pets with a preexisting illness or injury, as well as allowing cities to decide how pet stores get animals, and potentially stop stores from selling puppy mill pets. Read the full bill. Arizona Humane Society and the Humane Legislative Coalition of Arizona strongly support HB2329.

HB2359: income tax, charitable deductions

Changes from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 doubled the standard deduction, limiting the number of taxpayers who might continue to itemize, thereby also potentially reducing charitable giving. The Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits and Nonprofit Policy Council have introduced a bill in Arizona that would allow taxpayers to take the charitable deduction on their state taxes whether they itemize or not. Read the full billArizona Humane Society and the Humane Legislative Coalition of Arizona strongly support HB2359. 

HB2421: animal cruelty; working animals; harassment

The bill expands protection for animals to include protections against harassment of working animals (for example, police dogs left in a vehicle). Cruelty to animals under these circumstances is a class 1 (highest) misdemeanor. Read the full billArizona Humane Society and the Humane Legislative Coalition of Arizona strongly support HB2421. 

HB2588: animal abuser registration; penalties

The bill would require that any adult convicted of cruelty to animals or animal fighting must register with the Secretary of State. It would also mandate that in 2020, anyone that sells, gives or adopts three or more animals a year would be allowed to check the registry and would be prohibited from selling, giving or adopting out to someone listed Read the full bill. We support HB2588.