SENATE, No. 717

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

217th LEGISLATURE

 

PRE-FILED FOR INTRODUCTION IN THE 2016 SESSION

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  NILSA CRUZ-PEREZ

District 5 (Camden and Gloucester)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Authorizes placement of involved animal with animal welfare agency or similar entity pending adjudication of alleged animal cruelty violation when not adjudicated in seven days.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     Introduced Pending Technical Review by Legislative Counsel.

  


An Act concerning housing and care of animals involved in animal cruelty violations and supplementing Title 4 of the Revised Statutes.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    a.  Whenever an animal is confiscated from its owner pursuant to section 1 of P.L.1995, c.255 (C.4:22-26.1) or any other provision of chapter 19 or 22 of Title 4 of the Revised Statutes, and held pending adjudication of an alleged animal cruelty violation under chapter 19 or 22 of Title 4 of the Revised Statutes, the animal shall be placed by the court in the custody of an animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter on the seventh day after the confiscation of the animal, if the owner has not resumed custody of the animal.

     b.    The animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter shall properly house and care for the animal until adjudication of the alleged animal cruelty violations and final disposition of the animal by the court.  If the animal is placed in the custody of a shelter and remains at the shelter, the shelter may not offer the animal for adoption or euthanize the animal until seven days after the final disposition of the animal by the court.

     c.     The animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter shall be entitled to reimbursement of all care expenses incurred for the animal pursuant to subsection b. of this section.  Upon conviction of the animal cruelty offense or if the owner is found liable for civil penalties therefor, the court shall order the owner to pay the animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter for all care expenses incurred for the animal.

     d.    As used in this section:

     “Animal rescue organization" means an animal rescue organization as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1).

     “Animal rescue organization facility" means an animal rescue organization facility as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1).

     “Animal welfare organization” means a humane society or other group or organization dedicated to the care and protection of animals.  “Animal welfare organization” may include, but is not limited to, a group or organization that operates an animal rescue organization facility, foster home, or shelter.

     “Foster home” means a foster home as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1)

     “Shelter” means a shelter as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1).

     2.    This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill provides for an animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter to take custody of an animal confiscated from its owner and being held pending adjudication of an alleged animal cruelty violation.

     Specifically the bill provides that the animal would be placed in the custody of an animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter on the seventh day after it is confiscated, if the owner has not resumed custody of the animal. The animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter would properly house and care for the animal until adjudication of the alleged animal cruelty violation and final disposition of the animal by the court. The bill provides that if the animal is placed in the custody of a shelter and remains at the shelter, the shelter would not be able to offer the animal for adoption or euthanize the animal until seven days after the final disposition of the animal by the court.

     Furthermore, the bill provides that:

     1)    the animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter is entitled to reimbursement of all care expenses incurred for the animal; and

     2)    upon conviction of the animal cruelty offense or if the owner is found liable for civil penalties therefor, the court is directed to order the owner to pay the animal welfare organization, animal rescue organization, or operator of a foster home or shelter for all care expenses incurred for the animal.