Category Archives: Florida

Miami-Dade County, FL: Breed ban will go to public vote, Aug 14

Update 7/12/12: Please note, Miami-Dade residents must be registered to vote by July 16 in order to vote on this ballot. More information: https://stopbsl.org/2012/07/12/miami-dade-county-fl-reminder-to-repeal-breed-ban-residents-must-register-to-vote-by-july-16/
(Thank you, Patrick Miracle, for prompting this reminder!)


Miami-Dade County will put its longstanding breed ban to a public vote on August 14.

The ballot question, which is terribly confusing to read, and contains bias (as expected), will be: “Shall the ordinance repealing the county’s 23 year old law prohibiting the ownership of pit bulls as a dangerous breed of dogs become effective?”

(Hint: Vote YES.)

All alerts for Miami-Dade County: https://stopbsl.org/?s=%22miami-dade+county%22

Miami-Dade pit-bull ban to go to voters in August

County commissioners placed Miami-Dade’s 23-year-old pit-bull ban on the August ballot, giving voters a say on the prohibition for the first time.

BY PATRICIA MAZZEI AND CHARLES RABIN
PMAZZEI@MIAMIHERALD.COM

Miami-Dade voters will get a say for the first time on the county’s ban on pit bulls, after county commissioners agreed on Tuesday to put the 23-year-old prohibition on the August ballot.

Commissioners approved the referendum on an 11-1 vote, with Commissioner Barbara Jordan voting against. […]

The question on the August 14 ballot will ask voters, “Shall the ordinance repealing the county’s 23 year old law prohibiting the ownership of pit bulls as a dangerous breed of dogs become effective?”

Pit-bull enthusiasts, who had preferred that the Legislature take action because it will likely be more difficult to repeal the ban by referendum, have objected to including the phrase “dangerous breed of dogs” in the ballot language. […]

Full article retrieved 5/2/12 from http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/05/01/2776226/miami-dade-commission-to-discuss.html

Miami-Dade County, FL: Voters will decide whether to repeal breed ban

But the question is, in a county where fear and stereotype of “pit bulls” and their owners runs rampant (courtesy of the breed ban), will voters want to repeal the breed ban? County commissioners think they won’t. We suggest a hard-hitting PR campaign, starting now.

Jamie Buehrle Speaks for Pit Bulls, Finds Receptive Audience at County Commission

Miami-Dade Commissioners voted 3-1 to allow the ordinance banning pit bulls to go before voters

By Betty Yu | Tuesday, Apr 10, 2012

[…] She found support from the majority of commissioners. They voted 3-1 to allow the 1989 ordinance banning pit bulls to go before voters on the August election ballot. […]

Commissioner Barbara Jordan was the only one to vote against letting the voter decide. […]

The ballot question will go before voters on August 14 in the Miami-Dade County primary.

Full article retrieved 4/11/12 from http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Jamie-Buehrle-Speaks-for-Pit-Bulls-Finds-Receptive-Audience-on-Miami-Dade-County-Commission-146908195.html

Florida legislative session over, HB 997 / SB 1322 dead

The Florida legislature wrapped up on March 9. HB 997 / SB 1322, which would have repealed Miami-Dade’s breed ban, did not make it. HB 997 was waiting on a second hearing, and SB 1322 was stuck in a subcommittee.

However, hope is not lost for Miami-Dade. Florida residents, and Miami-Dade residents in particular, can continue to work for repeal of the county’s breed ban in several ways.

Ask Miami-Dade county commissioners to repeal the breed ban. Of course, people have already asked the commissioners to repeal the breed ban, and they’ve flatly refused (which is why HB 997 came to be in the first place). But commissioners have recently suggested putting the breed ban to a public vote. Also, election times give residents the opportunity to remove pro-ban commissioners and vote repeal-oriented commissioners in.

Miami-Dade County Commissioner email block
district1@miamidade.gov; district2@miamidade.gov; district3@miamidade.gov; district4@miamidade.gov; district5@miamidade.gov; district6@miamidade.gov; district7@miamidade.gov; district8@miamidade.gov; district9@miamidade.gov; district10@miamidade.gov; district11@miamidade.gov; district12@miamidade.gov; district13@miamidade.gov;

Ask your Florida legislator to re-file or co-sponsor HB 997 / SB 1322 in the next legislative session. Sometimes it takes a couple of tries to get a law passed. (Just ask Ohio!)

Contact your State Representative and Senator
http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/sections/representatives/myrepresentative.aspx

Join the Miami Coalition Against Breed-Specific Legislation to keep up with efforts to repeal Miami-Dade’s BSL: http://www.mcabsl.wildapricot.org/

Florida HB 997 scheduled for second reading, March 5

Update 3/6/12: The bill is still on the second reading calendar, but has not been read yet. We do not know if or when the House will take it up.

HB 997, which would repeal the breed ban in Miami-Dade (thereby treating all Florida municipalities and citizens equally), was postponed at second reading on March 2. It has been rescheduled for second reading on March 5. This could potentially set it up for a full House vote on March 6—barring any further delays.

Unfortunately, the legislative session ends on March 9, and the bill still has to go to the Senate side even if it passes the House. The continued delays have made the bill unlikely to pass without heroic measures.

However, Floridians, please continue to fight for HB 997 and push it as far in the process as it will go in the remaining time. The further it goes and the more successful it is, the more likely that the bill will be refiled next session. Some of you may remember Ohio HB 79. In 2009, HB 79 passed the Ohio House, but ran out of time and died in the Senate. Seeing that HB 79 had done well, even though it didn’t pass, Rep. Sears refiled the bill last year as HB 14. And of course, we all know what happened with HB 14! Sometimes it takes a few tries.

Florida residents, please contact your House Representatives and urge them to support HB 997.
If you do not know your House Rep, you can use the Legislator Finder:
http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/sections/representatives/myrepresentative.aspx

SB 1322, the companion bill on the Senate side, is still stuck in a subcommittee. Florida residents, please contact your Senator and ask him or her to intervene on behalf of SB 1322. The bill needs to be removed from the subcommittee and put back in motion.
Find your Senator here: http://www.flsenate.gov/Senators/Find

Status page for HB 997: http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/Sections/Bills/billsdetail.aspx?BillId=48233

Status page for SB 1322: http://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2012/1322

Florida HB 997 will have second reading, March 2

We are down to the wire in Florida, with the legislative session ending on March 9. Nevertheless, some good news—HB 997, which would repeal the breed ban in Miami-Dade (thereby treating all Florida municipalities and citizens equally), is still moving forward.

HB 997 has been scheduled on the Special Order Calendar for a second reading on March 2. This could potentially mean a third reading and House vote early next week!

Florida residents, please contact your House Representatives and urge them to support HB 997.
If you do not know your House Rep, you can use the Legislator Finder:
http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/sections/representatives/myrepresentative.aspx

Unfortunately, SB 1322, the companion bill on the Senate side, is still stuck in a subcommittee, voted against 5-2. Unless SB 1322 gets out of the subcommittee, it will be difficult if not impossible to get HB 997 passed by the deadline. The consideration of companion bills allows both the House and the Senate to consider a bill at the same time, which speeds up the process; without a companion bill, an approved House bill then has to go through the Senate process.

Florida residents, please contact your Senator and ask him or her to intervene on behalf of SB 1322. The bill needs to be removed from the subcommittee and put back in motion.
Find your Senator here: http://www.flsenate.gov/Senators/Find

Status page for HB 997: http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/Sections/Bills/billsdetail.aspx?BillId=48233

Status page for SB 1322: http://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2012/1322

Florida SB 1322 stopped in committee

Edit 2/29/12: After some reading, we are now fairly sure the “temporarily postponed” status is a euphemism for “did not pass.” SB 1322 is stuck in committee. The legislative session ends on March 9, so there is very little time left to salvage the effort. SB 1322 needs to be pulled from the committee and voted on by the full Senate. Please write your Senator today and ask him or her to help get SB 1322 out of the committee and onto the floor: http://www.myfloridahouse.gov/sections/representatives/myrepresentative.aspx
HB 997 also needs a full House vote by March 9. Please use the link above to also contact your House Representatives as well, and push them to vote on HB 997.
——–
Florida Senate Bill 1322, which would repeal the breed ban in Miami-Dade County, may not have passed subcommittee today. According to its status, it was “temporarily postponed” in the Budget Subcommittee on Criminal and Civil Justice Appropriations.

“Temporarily postponed” suggests it will be taken up again. However, I listened to today’s committee podcast, which tells a very different story.

Committee member Senator Christopher Smith at first did not appear to understand what the bill did: “So what is it, you’re exempting an ordinance that pre- what does this do, period? … This bill, now Miami-Dade wouldn’t be able to ban pit bulls?”

Despite being unclear about the bill, during the brief committee debate, Smith gave an impassioned speech against SB 1322: “In many areas in my district, there are kids getting mauled by pit bulls and ‘rockweilers.’ You can’t walk down the street in my neighborhood without seeing guys walking around with big Rottweilers and pit bulls on ropes. . . . Please allow local governments to deal with local issues and not take away everybody’s rights. If you want dogs other places and if you have hunting dogs or Greyhounds or whatever you got other places, that might be great for those places, but allow local communities to deal with public safety concerns in their local communities and vote down this very, very bad bill.” (Apparently Senator Smith is unaware that state law already prohibits all other municipalities from passing BSL.)

A vote followed:
Senator Bennett: No
Senator Evers: Yes
Senator Smith: No
Senator Storms: No
Senator Thrasher: No
Senator Joyner: No
Chair Bogdanoff: Yes
As a result, the bill has failed to pass the subcommittee.

I do not know at this time where this leaves SB 1322 or what its next step will be, but it does not look good.

In the event that SB 1322 is indeed truly “temporarily postponed” (not just a euphemism for “killed”), and is taken up by the subcommittee again, please contact the following members and explain to them why it is important to pass SB 1322: bogdanoff.ellyn.web@flsenate.gov; joyner.arthenia.web@flsenate.gov; bennett.mike.web@flsenate.gov; evers.greg.web@flsenate.gov; smith.chris.web@flsenate.gov; storms.ronda.web@flsenate.gov; thrasher.john.web@flsenate.gov

Status page for SB 1322: http://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2012/1322

Florida SB 1322 committee hearing, Feb 28

UPDATE 3/1/12: You are viewing an old post. Get the most recent news on HB 997 / SB 1322 here:
http://stopbsl.com/?s=%22hb+997%22

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Florida Senate Bill 1322, which would repeal the breed ban in Miami-Dade County, will be heard by the Budget Subcommittee on Criminal and Civil Justice Appropriations on February 28 at 10:45 AM in the Mallory Horne Committee Room, 37 Senate Office Building. You may read the agenda here: http://www.flsenate.gov/Committees/Show/BJA/MeetingNotice/1877

Please contact the following members and ask them to pass SB 1322: bogdanoff.ellyn.web@flsenate.gov; joyner.arthenia.web@flsenate.gov; bennett.mike.web@flsenate.gov; evers.greg.web@flsenate.gov; smith.chris.web@flsenate.gov; storms.ronda.web@flsenate.gov; thrasher.john.web@flsenate.gov

Status page for SB 1322: http://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2012/1322

The House companion bill, HB 997, passed its third committee last week and will soon be up for a vote in the full House.