Council discussion March 6, details at CRgov.com/animals
Following research and community feedback, Town Council is poised to hear and discuss an introduction to a series of proposed changes to the Town’s animal code, including a staff recommendation to replace the current breed-specific ban with a two-tiered, behavior-based system.
As a home rule municipality, the Town of Castle Rock has its own set of laws and codes. It's prudent for a local government to take a look at its laws from time to time to ensure they are up to par with current legal best practices and local culture. That's why Town staff started a review of the Town Code related to animals in 2017.
Town staff will present recommendations, along with community feedback, to Town Council during its regular March 6 meeting. There will be time for public comment. Go to www.CRgov.com/animals to get more information about the Town staff research, proposed changes and to submit additional feedback.
It’s important to note this is on the agenda for discussion and determination whether the proposed ordinance changes should be presented for formal consideration on a Town Council agenda, at a later date. Council is not expected to vote on these proposed changes on March 6. Any changes to Town Code require two readings, which include two formal public hearings. Those hearings have not been set.
Town Council meetings begin at 6 p.m. in Council Chambers at Town Hall, 100 N. Wilcox St. View agendas at www.CRgov.com/Agendas.
Proposal: replace the current breed-specific ban with a two-tired, behavior-based system
One of those proposed changes is related to the Town’s current ban on American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers and Staffordshire Bull Terriers.
Town staff conducted extensive research throughout the review process and found most Colorado communities do not have breed-specific bans. Research shows breed-specific bans present a number of challenges and are difficult to enforce. That's why Town staff is making the recommendation to replace the breed-specific ban with a two-tiered behavior-based potentially dangerous and dangerous animal system. The proposed system would allow authorities to focus on the particular behavior of a dog and not its appearance or genetic make-up.
It's important to note, the proposed system also outlines definitions for both potentially dangerous and dangerous animals. These definitions are designed to proactively manage a potentially dangerous dog, and would not necessarily require a dog to injure/bite another animal or person before being classified as potentially dangerous. Additionally, dangerous dogs would be clearly defined, and steps to remove the animal from Town limits would be outlined.
Staff has also proposed revisions to other areas of Town Code related to a variety of animals, including chickens, bees, dogs, cats, wildlife and more. The research conducted by Town staff can be found at www.CRgov.com/animals.