COLUMBUS TOP DOGS
Dear Companion Pet Lovers ~
Companion pets play important roles in all aspects of our lives. As a team of dedicated animal advocates based throughout Ohio, we understand this truly unique and irreplaceable relationship. We help support community-based programs and services benefiting our animal community through sponsorship of various fundraisers held throughout the calendar year. For more information on pet events benefiting the rescue community, please visit our News and Events page.
Make Your Voice Heard!
Forty-six states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands have laws making certain types of animal cruelty a felony offense. Ohio is only one of four states (AK, IA and PA being the other three) which does not have a first offense felony animal cruelty law. Click here (page 10) for a summary of state animal cruelty provisions.
For more information on Ohio Revised Code 959.13 - Cruelty to Animals, click here.
For more information on Ohio Revised Code 959.131 - Prohibitions concerning companion animals, click here.
For more information on Ohio Revised Code 1717.13 - Any person may protect animal, click here.
Now more than ever, our state elected officials need to hear from us (the voters!) on legislation impacting the welfare of Ohio's companion animals! We invite you to review legislation currently pending in the 130th General Assembly:
HB 57 - To amend sections 109.73, 317.08, 959.131, 1717.01, 1717.04, 1717.06, and 1717.09 of the Revised Code to require an individual to file proof of successful completion of training with the county recorder prior to being appointed as a humane society agent and to require the revocation or suspension of an appointment under certain circumstances.
HB 90 - To amend sections 959.131, 959.132, and 959.99 of the Revised Code to specifically prohibit an owner, manager, or employee of a kennel of dogs from committing cruel treatment of a companion animal, to give a prosecutor who prosecutes an owner, manager, or employee of a kennel of dogs who commits cruel treatment of a companion animal discretion in prosecuting the owner, manager, or employee for the offense, and to remove certain language regarding the negligent treatment of companion animals.
SB 50 - To amend section 955.08 of the Revised Code to authorize county auditors to issue dog registration tags that are valid for more than one year and include a QR code on dog registration tags.
To locate your legislator in the Ohio General Assembly House and/or Senate, click here.
The 128th General Assembly set a modern record for inactivity!
The first politically divided legislature in 14 years held fewer sessions and passed fewer bills over the past two years than those that preceded it - much fewer. Lawmakers will argue that such statistics are not necessarily true gauges of workload or success. There were some legislative accomplishments, but the numbers are so much lower than in past sessions that they are hard to ignore. Consider:
Support a Ban on Ohio Dog Auctions!
Since 2004, Ohio Dog Auctions have grown into anything but run of the mill. Breeders who participate in these auctions are raising large numbers of dogs and puppies with profit as the primary motive for existence. Many of them are found to be unhealthy, not screened for genetic diseases, do not show resemblance to the breed standard and lack good temperament.
For more information on our efforts to ban dog auctions in Ohio, we invite you to visit the website - Coalition to Ban Ohio Dog Auctions.
USDA Misappropriates Over ONE BILLION in Taxpayer Dollars!
Three separate reports by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) indicate that between the years 1999 to 2008, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) misappropriated over a BILLION in taxpayers dollars!
A July 9, 2007 report and a July 24, 2007 report state that not only were millions given away to farming entities that exceeded income limits established by the legislature or to entities that had little to do with farming, but also that 1.1 BILLION in farm payments made from 1999 to 2005 were given to 170,000 DECEASED individuals!
July 9, 2007 Report;
July 24, 2007 Report;
2008 report (indicated that $49 million was similarly misappropriated to 2,500 farmers above the income means or to entities having little to do with farming and/or agriculture):
The GAO, ignoring the "lost money" issue, has confirmed that from this point forward, the USDA should review all tax returns prior to the granting of farm subsidies, noting that about 1.8 million farmers receive over 20 BILLION dollars annually in farm subsidies.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner announced March 19, 2009 that beginning with the 2009 crop year, all farm program participants will be required to sign a separate form granting the IRS the authority to provide income information to USDA to verify that their incomes do not exceed limits established in the 2008 farm bill.
Concerned about claims of "invasion of privacy rights," Vilsack stated that the USDA Farm Service Agency will not receive producers’ actual tax data and that the agency will adhere to all disclosure and Privacy Act rules.
The 2008 farm bill makes farmers ineligible for the direct payments program if their adjusted gross income from farming for the past three years averaged more than $750,000 or their nonfarm income exceeded $500,000. Landowners also are ineligible for conservation payments if their nonfarm average gross income exceeded $1 million for the last three years unless two-thirds of it came from farming.
Vilsack said, one of the goals of this administration is to make certain that USDA payments are not issued to individuals and entities that exceed income eligibility limits established by law. Once this verification system is fully operational, high-income individuals and entities will be identified by USDA before farm program payments are actually disbursed to them.
Geithner added, “This cooperation between the Treasury Department and USDA will implement reforms from the 2008 farm bill to ensure payments go only to those who need them and are supposed to receive them. The goal is to limit excessive payments while providing for fairness to family farmers.”
Taxpayers are encouraged to write their legislators asking for a FULL RETURN of the misappropriated monies, particularly the most recent $49 million that was misappropriated in 2008 to 2,500 wealthy farmers that were ineligible to receive said payments or to entities that had little to do with farming or agriculture.
U.S. Department of the Treasury;
Governmet Accountability Office (GAO):
U.S. House of Representatives;
(202) 224 - 4515