Connecticut Seal

Substitute House Bill No. 5446

Public Act No. 12-108

AN ACT CONCERNING THE PAYMENT PROCEDURE FOR THE STERILIZATION AND VACCINATION OF CERTAIN DOGS AND CATS AND PROVIDING FOR ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER TRAINING.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Subsection (a) of section 22-380f of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2012):

(a) No pound shall sell or give away any unspayed or unneutered dog or cat to any person unless such pound receives forty-five dollars from the person buying or adopting such dog or cat. Funds received pursuant to this section shall be paid quarterly by the municipality into the animal population control account established under section 22-380g, as amended by this act. At the time of receipt of such payment, the pound shall [provide] complete a voucher, for the purpose of [sterilization and vaccination] benefits, as provided in section 22-380i, for the sterilization and vaccination of such dog or cat and (1) provide the voucher to the person buying or adopting such dog or cat, [. Such] or (2) retain such voucher and submit it to a participating veterinarian for such sterilization and vaccination before releasing the dog or cat to the person buying or adopting the dog or cat. Any such voucher shall be on a form provided by the commissioner and signed (A) by the eligible owner if the voucher is provided to the person buying or adopting the dog or cat, or (B) by a representative of the pound if the pound retains the voucher. Such voucher shall become void after sixty days from the date of purchase or adoption unless a participating veterinarian certifies that the dog or cat is medically unfit for surgery. Such certification shall be on a form provided by the commissioner and specify a date by which such dog or cat may be fit for sterilization. If the surgery is performed more than thirty days after such specified date, the voucher shall become void. In the case of a dog or cat that has been previously sterilized or is permanently medically unfit for sterilization, as determined by a participating veterinarian, the voucher shall be void and the eligible owner may apply to the commissioner for a refund in the amount of forty-five dollars. If a dog or cat has pyometra and is not purchased or adopted from a pound, a representative of the pound may complete a voucher, for the purpose of benefits, as provided in section 22-380i, and submit such voucher to a participating veterinarian for the sterilization and vaccination of such dog or cat.

Sec. 2. Section 22-328 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):

(a) The commissioner is authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter and chapters 436 and 436a and the regulations adopted thereunder in accordance with the provisions of such chapters and chapter 54.

(b) The commissioner shall appoint, as provided by chapter 67: (1) A Chief State Animal Control Officer; (2) an Assistant Chief State Animal Control Officer, who shall perform all the duties of the Chief State Animal Control Officer in such officer's absence or inability, or at such officer's direction; and (3) not more than twelve state animal control officers and as many regional animal control officers and assistants as may be deemed necessary to insure, subject to the commissioner's direction, the enforcement of the provisions of this chapter and chapters 436 and 436a and the enforcement of regulations adopted by the commissioner. The expenses incurred in the administration of this chapter and chapters 436 and 436a shall be paid from dog funds in the custody of the State Treasurer which have been received from the several municipalities and from the commissioner for the same fiscal year as the expenses are incurred.

(c) No person may begin serving in the position of state, regional or municipal animal control officer on or after July 1, 2012, unless such person (1) has completed a training program that meets the requirements of subsection (d) of this section and received a certificate of such completion from the commissioner pursuant to subsection (e) of this section, or (2) submits an affidavit to the commissioner agreeing to complete such a training program not later than one year after beginning such position. The commissioner shall reimburse each person completing such a training program for the costs of the program, from the animal population control account established in section 22-380g, as amended by this act.

(d) Not later than July 1, 2012, the commissioner shall prescribe the standards and curriculum for a training program for persons interested in serving in the position of animal control officer or appointed on or after July 1, 2012, to such position. Such training program shall consist of eighty or more hours of instruction. The curriculum for such program shall include the following topics:

(1) Animal identification;

(2) State laws governing animal control and protection and animal cruelty;

(3) Animal health and disease recognition, control and prevention;

(4) The humane care and treatment of animals;

(5) Standards for care and control of animals in an animal shelter;

(6) Standards and procedures for the transportation of animals;

(7) Principles and procedures for capturing and handling stray domestic animals and wildlife, including principles and procedures to be followed with respect to an instrument used specifically for deterring the bite of an animal;

(8) First aid for injured animals;

(9) Documentation of animal cruelty evidence and courtroom procedures;

(10) Animal shelter operations and administration;

(11) Spaying and neutering, microchipping and adoption;

(12) Communications and public relations;

(13) Search warrants and affidavits;

(14) Civil liability for the animal control officer;

(15) Crisis intervention and officer safety; and

(16) Any other topics pertinent to animal control and animal shelter personnel.

(e) Upon satisfactorily completing such training program, a person shall submit evidence of such completion to the commissioner, and the commissioner shall issue a certificate to such person. The certificate shall contain the person's name, the name of the training program and the date of completion. The commissioner may charge a reasonable fee to cover the cost of issuance of such certificate. The commissioner shall maintain records to document compliance with subsection (c) of this section.

(f) Each animal control officer shall complete a minimum of six hours of continuing education related to the duties of an animal control officer in each calendar year. The commissioner shall adopt regulations, in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, concerning the implementation of such continuing education requirement.

Sec. 3. Subsection (e) of section 22-380g of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective from passage):

(e) Any revenue collected pursuant to the provisions of sections 22-380f and 22-380l shall be deposited in the animal population control account. All money in the account shall be used by the commissioner exclusively for (1) the implementation and promotion of the animal population control program, [and for] (2) the costs associated with the administration of [the] such program, provided not more than two hundred twenty-five thousand dollars may be expended for administrative costs per year, and (3) reimbursement of persons completing a training program pursuant to subsections (c) and (d) of section 22-328, as amended by this act, for the costs of such program.