Pasco Council Readies Changes to ‘Dangerous Dog’ Ordinances
Like it's neighbor across the river (Kennewick), the City of Pasco is preparing to revise it's ordinances pertaining to dog and animal breeds that are classified as dangerous. They are having to do so to become compliant with a new state law.
House Bill 1026 passed the legislature and will go into effect January 1st, 2020. It forbids cities from utilizing what's called "Breed Specific Legislation." That's the policy that certain breeds, such as pit bulls, are ALL classified as dangerous and therefore prohibited--regardless of the dog's history or disposition.
The new bill demands that dogs be allowed to pass what's called a GCT, or good canine test, before they are classified as dangerous. Although cities can still deem certain animals as 'hazardous,' they basically have to go case by case in some situations, especially if the owner can justify and prove their dog does not have a history of violent behavior. This does NOT mean certain breeds or dogs will not be banned, it does mean owners have a chance to 'exempt' the ban or restrictions if their dog passes the test.
In order to modify the legislation, the City Council plans to hear from the public by holding two meetings in December, one on the 2nd and the second on December 16th, both 7PM at Pasco City Hall. The public and dog owners are invited to attend.
Pit bull and other breed advocates welcome the opportunity, some are hoping the City might do away with all forms of dangerous breed dog ordinances.