fron TX-RPOA~Texas Regulatory Meetings held for Dog & Cat Breeders

 

During the month of March, Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation (TDLR) held a series of regional, face-to-face sessions in McAllen, Lubbock, Dallas, Houston, and Austin entitled “Your Voice Matters.” TDLR asked four questions: 1) What are we doing well? 2) What can we do better? 3) What changes would you make to TDLR if you were king or queen for a day? 4) Over the next 5 years, what major changes will affect the way you do business and the services we provide?

TDLR Director Bill Kuntz encouraged RPOA to have our folks organized and present at these meetings for our input regarding the Texas Dog & Cat Breeder Law because “the opposition certainly will do so.” Be aware that HB 1451 bill had the “commercial” word removed by Sponsor Rep. Senfronia Thompson before passage, which should tell you something!

RPOA had a representative at all meetings except the McAllen Session to get our input on the record and that one absence was due to a conflict with work.

Anne Humphreys, RPOA Chapter Chairman, represented us at the TDLR Lubbock Meeting and was the only person to show up, period, regarding any issue! Anne presented our positions and was assured her comments would be collated from all the meetings before being presented to “whomever.”

Claudia Leffler reported that there were only 4 people attending the Houston TDLR Meeting other than herself and she was the only person speaking on the Licensed Breeder issue. Claudia presented our RPOA letter; was assured it would be included in their report; and she expanded on our talking points for the 4 questions. Claudia mentioned that it seemed the animal “activists” were influencing their decisions but that was not added to the official record. However her other comments were acknowledged.

George Armstrong, RPOA Chapter Chairman, represented us at the Austin TDLR Meeting but was outnumbered by Texas Humane Legislation Network members, as we expected. The speaker following George was opposed to moving the Licensed Breeder Program under Texas Department of Agriculture. She complained that she had turned in a breeder and nothing was done! (Maybe the breeder wasn’t required to be licensed, but this seems to be lost in the conversation now!)

When asked what TDLR can do if refused entrance to a facility, they replied, “Nothing.” (TDLR seems to speak out of both sides of their mouth because they have been doing plenty to harass breeders!)

Martin Kralik and Rita Rice attended the Dallas TDLR Meeting representing the RPOA Chapter there. They reported that approx. 16 commercial breeders were in attendance from Steve Epperson’s commercial breeders’ organization; 2 show/hobby breeders; and Cile Holloway with Texas Humane Legislation Network (the HSUS affiliate in Texas).

The commercial licensed breeders said they want every breeder in Texas licensed, even for selling one pup/kitten, because they themselves must be licensed! They all wanted to keep the Licensed Breeders program under TDLR, while Martin asked that it be moved under Texas Department of Agriculture.

Unfortunately, it appears that the “real” commercial breeders group is supporting THLN instead of RPOA, and joined with Cile Holloway (THLN) wanting more funding for better enforcement, inspections, and quicker reaction to complaints. The commercial breeders with Epperson’s group hired their own lobbyist last Legislative Session and did not support RPOA.

Cile Holloway (THLN) wants expedited “investigations” and is “happy” that TDLR is conducting Animal Cruelty Training. We must ask “who” is conducting this training? HSUS?

Martin asked why the Licensed Breeders Advisory Committee is the only “trade” committee NOT composed of its peers? Director Bill Kuntz replied that “the legislators required that anti-breeders be on the committee.” His words. This is definitely true as the problem lies with the statute itself, which TDLR cannot change. TDLR can expand upon bill language with rules, but not do less than stated in statute. HB 1451 must be “repealed and replaced” with reasonable regulations that truly address “commercial” breeders!

The Texas Dog & Cat Licensed Breeders Bill is the HSUS template being floated in every state and not a legislative response to any “need” in Texas. It was passed under false pretenses.

All of you owe our representatives mentioned above appreciation for standing up for “your” animals this month. RPOA certainly appreciates them and says “Thank You!” for doing a fantastic job!

……………………………………………….

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I also report all the updates here…What happens in Texas can happen everywhere…

Disclaimer connected to this blog…Things said are of my opinion and the opinions of others…Stay tuned  -B

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~ by topcatsroar on April 6, 2014.

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