[COLUMN] Lawmakers say horses aren’t animals; an ‘appalling’ bill, says Rose Law Group Equine Law Attorney Adam Trenk

red herringBy Linda Valdez, The Republic | azcentral.com

(Editor’s note: Opinion pieces are published for discussions purposes only.)

A strike-everything bill that passed the Senate today is ostensibly about animal hoarding. But that’s just the sheep’s clothing.

The bill would “weaken the already-meager protections for farm animals in Arizona,” according to Paul Shapiro of the Humane Society of the United States.

HB 2150 includes what Shapiro calls “a few red-herring provisions . . . to give the illusion that it benefits animals.” But what it really does is separate poultry and livestock from animal cruelty statutes so that agriculture lobbyists can “chip away at protections in the newly-separated statute without fear of angering dog and cat advocates,” he says.

Comments by Rose Law Group Equine Law Attorney Adam Trenk:

“There are few more important tenants of democracy than the fundamental concept of local control. Regardless of the intent of this legislation, the fact that it seeks to strip local governments ability to self-regulate is appalling. The fact that this proposal relates to the treatment of animals is more concerning, particularly considering state resources to enforce laws are constantly squeezed by state budget restraints.”

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