Monday, June 14, 2010


Even family pets might be taking a hit as a result of the tough economic times. Or maybe puppies will start to feel liberated and out from under the scrutiny of Big Brother. Under a bill sponsored by Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande, towns would no longer be required to use limited public resources on biennial censuses of dogs.

The bill repeals the requirement for a local canine census, which has been on the books since 1941 and has not been obeyed by a majority of New Jersey towns. Of the New Jersey’s 566 municipalities, only 81 conducted a census in 2009 and 91 did do in 2008.

“Most local officials cannot justify this expense to property taxpayers and state government does not have the resources to enforce it,” says Casagrande. “As we reform government, we must explore all ways to reduce expenses for taxpayers…….“If towns can justify to property taxpayers using limited resources to count dogs, they can continue their censuses without a mandate from Trenton. Our federal Constitution requires a count of the people every 10 years, there is no similar requirement about having to do it more frequently for pooches.

Under the measure local officials would not be barred from conducting a pet census if they believe that is in the best interest of their constituents, both human and canine.

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