Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Pit Bull Ban Packs Tax Bite

The London Free Pree stated today, the blunt of the taxes will be taken off of responsible owners and on to tax payers. There will be a review in a year to see how it goes. By then Clayton Ruby should have already have had some court cases and hopefully by that time we either won or close to winning.

As a relief to us, I can see the hatred that the private citizen will have towards the Pit bull owners, saying it is US that should be paying these taxes. Oh what a wonderful world we live. You are damned if you do...and damned if you don't.
Wait! This COULD be a GOOD thing! With an after thought, our come back could be, 'You wanted this ban. Well, I'm sorry but you have to pay for it. ' Naturally you give a pretty smile afterwards and walk away.

As it stands of now and with the city's bylaw now in effect, here is how it stands...and let me assure the people that think this is still unfair, considering what we were up against prior, we are relieved to our licensing fees now. At least we can have a decent Christmas, and for that we are grateful.

Pit bull law packs tax bite
Tue, November 1, 2005
By JONATHAN SHER, Free Press City Hall Reporter

An Ontario law that targets dangerous dogs could take a $100,000 bite out of London taxpayers.
The new law, which takes effect in February, has municipalities across the province scrambling to estimate its potential cost to local property tax owners.
It's a guessing game, said Jay Stanford, London's manager of environmental services, with the city budgeting $100,000 while a comparable city such as Hamilton is budgeting $250,000.
"There could be a shortfall (here)," Stanford told the city's environment and transportation committee yesterday.
The committee unanimously recommended a city bylaw licensing pit bulls, praising staff for removing some of the law's more contentious elements and softening others.
"It's reasonable, it's fair and it's balanced," Coun. Bill Armstrong said.
"It protects the public and doesn't punish responsible dog owners."
The proposed bylaw, modified after a public meeting in September, halves licence fees and doesn't require owners to buy insurance or post warning signs.
City staff say bylaws are being enacted across the province to enforce the Ontario law banning pit bulls.
New Ontario regulations also target dangerous dogs more generally, Stanford said, and it's unclear how much they will cost to enforce locally.
It's unfortunate, Armstrong said, taxpayers will bear the brunt of a bylaw made necessary by some irresponsible dog owners.
"That's the only part I'm sad about," he said.
It's a matter of time before dog bylaws are challenged in court, but the costs of putting them in place are worth it to prevent vicious dog attacks, Controller Russ Monteith said.
"If we do that, the money's well spent," he said.
If adopted, the London bylaw would be reviewed after a year, said the city's Pat McNally.
Since the public meeting, staff have recommended changes, including:
- A licence fee of $50 instead of $130 and an application fee of $10 instead of $25.
- Removing requirements That owners post a warning sign and carry $1 million in liability insurance.
- Allowing owners outside the city to bring registered dogs here for veterinary care.
- Exempting from a sterilization requirement dogs unfit for the procedure.
The province imposed the pit bull ban following a series of brutal attacks by the squat, powerful dogs.
Pit bulls born before Nov. 27 are exempt if sterilized, leashed and muzzled.

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