SB 227 - Under current law, certain dangerous wild animals may not be kept unless they are registered with local law enforcement except if the animals are kept in a zoo, circus, scientific or educational institution, research laboratory, veterinary hospital or animal refuge. This act removes the exception for animal refuges. The act also adds the criteria that research laboratories and scientific and educational institutions must be accredited, veterinary hospitals must be permitted by the Missouri Veterinary Medical Board, and zoos must be accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums in order for the exception to apply.
The act removes the margay, jaguarundi, coyote, and certain reptiles from the list of animals for which registration is required.
The act specifies that the law enforcement agency responsible for receiving the registrations is the chief law enforcement official in each county or in the City of St. Louis, or his or her designee.
Any such dangerous wild animal shall be registered within 5 days of being acquired or moved into any county or the city of St. Louis. The act adds the requirement that registration of such animals must be renewed annually.
The chief law enforcement official in each county or in St. Louis is required to maintain the registry of dangerous wild animals and make the registry available for disaster preparedness, emergencies, and to the general public via a website. The official can charge a registration fee to cover the administrative expenses associated with maintaining the registry not to exceed $50 for a first registration or $25 for a renewal registration. Animal refuges that operate as non-profit organizations are exempt from the fee provisions.
The act specifies the information that must be recorded as part of the animal's registration.
Any animal required to be registered under this act shall be identifiable by a microchip or other reliable identification device.
The act prohibits the bringing of any such dangerous wild animal to a public, commercial, or retail establishment unless it is a veterinarian or veterinary clinic. The animals shall not come into contact with anyone other than the owner, possessor, handler, or veterinarian.
A violation of the act is a Class A misdemeanor.
The act is similar to SB 1032 (2008).