Tedisco Legislation Creates Peace Officer Status for Animal Control Officers

June 24, 2004
A champion of animal rights, Assemblyman Jim Tedisco (R,I,C-Schenectady-Saratoga) today announced passage of two bills that give animal control officers the authority to issue appearance tickets, serve summonses and make arrests for instances of animal abuse.

"Animal abusers in the city of Schenectady and town of Glenville beware. Law enforcement efforts to help catch animal abuse will now be greatly stepped up," said Tedisco.

Current law relies on local police or a local chapter of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) to monitor animal abuse incidents. With law enforcement efforts focused on a myriad of issues and the absence of an SPCA chapter in Schenectady County, Tedisco says his legislation is needed to more effectively catch and punish animal abusers.

"These two bills designate dog control officers as peace officers," said Tedisco. "They will be required to fulfill special training requirements and would operate in accordance with the criminal procedure law."

Tedisco said his legislation will make Schenectady and Glenville safer. "Our streets will be safer with more officers cracking down on people abusing animals, and especially on people raising fighting dogs, which pose a serious threat to our neighborhoods."