Hot Springs Village, AR proposes breed specific ordinance

The Hot Springs Village Property Owners’ Board met today to discuss a new “vicious dog ordinance” following a fatal dog attack in November.  That attack involved a bull mastiff that had a long history of aggressive behavior.  In addition, the dog was owned by two incredibly irresponsible women, a mother and daughter, who were aware of the dog’s history, yet routinely allowed the dog to roam the neighborhood freely.  Arrest warrants were issued for both women, and one has been charged with manslaughter.

Hot Springs Village is situated in both Garland and Saline Counties, Arkansas, and is governed by a Property Board.  It is the largest gated community in the United States.  The portion in Saline County is located in Little Rock and North Little Rock, both of which have breed specific laws targeting “pit bulls,” while the unincorporated areas of Garland County are covered by a newly enacted breed specific law.  Regardless, none of the laws in these areas apply to the dog breed involved in this incident highlighting, once again, the major flaws of breed specific laws.

As a result of today’s meeting, the Board will recommend that the community adopt all of Garland County’s dog-related ordinances.  You will recall that Garland County passed an ordinance targeting “gripper breeds” that went into effect in October 2013.  You will also recall that the new ordinance is already a financial disaster for Garland County, and it has resulted in shelter overflow and far too many healthy, adoptable dogs being euthanized due to lack of space.

There will be a public hearing before the Property Owners’ Board votes on the proposed ordinance.  The meeting is scheduled for January 23 at 3:00 p.m. in the Coronado Center in Hot Springs Village.  If eventually approved by the Board, the ordinance would need to be enacted by quorum courts in Garland and Saline Counties, due to the Village residing in both locations.

Please send your polite, respectful and informative opposition to breed specific legislation to the Hot Springs Board members listed below. Please also provide them with viable alternatives and suggestions, and please make them aware of the problems Garland County is experiencing with their new ordinance.

The Board would also benefit from reviewing the NAIA publication, “A Guide to Constructing Successful, Pet Friendly ordinances.”  The guide has some excellent points that would help lay the groundwork for an ordinance that will address the problems in the Village.

Talking points and alternatives to breed specific legislation can be found here.

To email the Board of Directors collectively, click here.

In the alternative, you can contact individual Board members via their respective e-mail addresses:

keithkeck@aol.com,jcooney01@msn.com,jeffatkins@aol.com,
bigbugs33@suddenlink.net,trbryant@suddenlink.net,
fleeming@sbcglobal.net,hwcshelton@gmail.com

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