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Time Magazine Features Lt. Gov Candidate Dean Florez Animal Abuse Registry Legislation

Once More California Senator and Lt. Governor Candidate Dean Florez Proposed Legislation gains high profile national attention; California is often viewed as leading the Nation. This time the bill that proposes an Animal Abuse Registry is featured in the latest issue of Time Magazine. I have written before about this bill and Time Magazine captures one of the more important arguments for passage of this legislation right up front.

Should There Be an Animal-Abuser Registry?

Cruelty to animals, it is said, is often a precursor to graver crimes. So would there not be some usefulness to a registry of individuals convicted of felony animal abuse? Legislators in California want the Golden State to be the first to establish such a record – just as California was the first in the nation to create a registry of sex offenders.

The popularity of such legislation can be measured in many ways. I noted while reading the Time coverage, even though the story was just released over 2000 Facebook users have noted the legislation and took some type of action.

“We think California is primed for this kind of a bill,” says state senate majority leader Dean Florez, who introduced the bill in late February. “We’ve progressed to the point where we as a legislature are moving in a direction of this bill, which is ultimately, How do we in essence prevent repeat offenses when it comes to cruelty to animals in the state of California?” It is an issue that, Florez says, Californians care for deeply. About 60% of California residents own pets, he says; add in farm animals, and 80% of the population has some kind of ownership of animals.

One issue that must be resolved is the funding of the measure, be it by pet owners who purchase food, those convicted must pay a fine, or some other equitable measure.

If I were a betting person I would put my money on the Legislature finding equitable funding of this bill that would  be added to the legislation before it becomes law. Given the apparent popularity (and I know the Facebook measure is not scientific), I think the Governor would sign it. That is if a sticking point will be getting the votes to pass, which will require some Republican votes.

Time quotes Florez “In this case,” he says, “the issue is simple. Do Republican members … really want to be seen on the side of animal abuse? I don’t think they do.”

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