Thanks to Jo Staats for this update on Bluefield, W.Va.:
After announcing a proposed pit bull ban had been withdrawn due to public outcry late last week, officials in Bluefield, West Virginia added the proposed ban back to the agenda late Tuesday, March 26th.
According to those in attendance, the Bluefield Board of Directors read the proposed ban and then took public comment. The meeting was packed with opponents to the proposed ordinance.
Directors commented that the current breed specific ordinance requiring registration of ‘pit bulldogs and wolf-hybrids’ had not been effectively enforced or followed by residents owning the breeds. According to City Manager Jim Ferguson, as of the last meeting he, could find no pit bulls registered with the city, and as of last night’s meeting, only eight had been registered.
Once a dog is registered with the city, the current breed specific ordinance requires an owner to keep the dog on a leash no longer than six-feet, and muzzled when outside of its 6-sided kennel. All kennels must be locked by key or combination lock, and no pit bull-type dog or wolf-hybrid can be tethered to an inanimate object. “Inside” dogs cannot be kept in a house with open or screened windows, on an enclosed porch or anywhere a dog can escape. All owners of such dogs must also keep the premises posted with a “Beware of Dog” sign.
Any dog deemed dangerous can be ordered by municipal court to be ‘destroyed’ immediately.
*It is important to note that once an owner willingly submits to registration, whether there is proof that a dog does in fact meet a definition of ‘pit bull’ or not, legally the dog can be determined a pit bull without requiring DNA testing.
The Board of Directors took no action on the proposal stating they would continue discussion. The next meeting is scheduled for April 9th, 2013 at 12:00 P.M.
Residents and advocates are planning a strategy meeting that will take place before the April board meeting. If you are interested in taking part, please contact Jo Staats at WVPitBullHave07@gmail.com or https://www.facebook.com/joanglestaats.
Please continue to send your POLITE and INFORMATIVE correspondence to the Bluefield officials below:
City of Bluefield
200 Rogers St
Bluefield, WV 24701
Mayor Linda Whalen
Director Mary Frances Brammer
Director Deb Sarver
Director Pete Sternloff
Director Tom Blevins
Previous alert for Bluefield, W.Va