senate Bill S6669

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Prohibits cruel treatment of elephants

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Feb 25, 2014 referred to agriculture

S6669 - Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A3154A
Current Committee:
Law Section:
Agriculture and Markets Law
Laws Affected:
Add ยง380, Ag & Mkts L

S6669 - Bill Texts

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Prohibits cruel treatment of elephants; prohibits the possession of certain devices; prohibits the use of certain devices on elephants; prohibits acts which cause pain, injury or death to an elephant; any violation of this section shall constitute a class E felony.

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BILL NUMBER:S6669

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the agriculture and markets law, in
relation to prohibiting cruel treatment of elephants

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:

The purpose of this legislation is to prohibit acts of cruelty on or
to an elephant in order to ensure their safety and well being.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

Section one adds a new section 380 to prohibit any person from
committing acts or possessing implements which are likely to cause
injury or death to an elephant. Violations to this section shall
constitute a class E felony. Nothing in this section shall be
construed to affect any other protections afforded to elephants under
any other provision of this article or any other law. Nothing in this
section shall prohibit the enactment of local laws or ordinances
governing or restricting the use of elephants that are more stringent.
Nothing shall be construed to prohibit a veterinarian from performing
necessary treatment on an elephant.

Section two provides the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION:

Elephants used for exhibition have been subjected to abusive handling,
training and discipline techniques, including, for example, the use of
bullhooks, shocking devices, whips and chains. According to the
Animals and Society Institute in its report entitled, "Elephants in
Circuses: Analysis of Practice Policy, and Future," "Early trauma,
chronic stress, and severe deprivation are common to most, if not all,
close-confinement institutions, notably circuses and zoos. These
conditions lead, to severe psychobiological and physiological damage
to elephants in captivity. The added stress and trauma exerted by such
practices as beating, negative reinforcement, chaining, physical
abuse, and social isolation further undermine elephant wellbeing..."

Corporal punishment also increases behavioral stress and aggression in
elephants, thus creating public health and safety concerns. According
to a report published by the Performing Welfare Society, an average of
one elephant keeper is killed by a captive elephant every year. Some
of these incidents can be attributed to harsh training and handling
methods. When elephants are restrained for long periods of time, they
are also more susceptible to degenerative joint disease due to the
lack of circulation in their legs and to infection if their foot pads
are not carefully maintained. This legislation will help to prevent
abusive training and handling of elephants in our state and will
better protect the safety and welfare of the public.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

This is a new bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:


None to the state.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall become
law.

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                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  6669

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            February 25, 2014
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. HOYLMAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Agriculture

AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to  prohib-
  iting cruel treatment of elephants

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a  new
section 380 to read as follows:
  S 380. CRUELTY TO ELEPHANTS. 1. IT SHALL BE UNLAWFUL FOR ANY PERSON TO
COMMIT ANY OF THE FOLLOWING ACTS ON OR TO AN ELEPHANT:
  (A) USING A BULLHOOK, ANKUS, OR SIMILAR DEVICE;
  (B) USING ELECTRICITY OR ANY SHOCKING DEVICE;
  (C) USING MARTINGALES, WHIP, OR BLOCK AND TACKLE;
  (D)  HITTING, BEATING, PUNCHING, KICKING, OR ENGAGING IN ANY OTHER ACT
WHICH COULD CAUSE PAIN OR INJURY;
  (E) INSERTING ANY INSTRUMENT INTO ANY BODILY ORIFICE;
  (F) USING CHAINS FOR THE PURPOSE OF RESTRAINING OR TYING  DOWN  EXCEPT
FOR THE LIMITED PURPOSE OF PROTECTING PUBLIC SAFETY;
  (G) DEPRIVING OF ADEQUATE FOOD, WATER, OR REST; OR
  (H) COMMITTING ANY OTHER PRACTICES WHICH ARE LIKELY TO CAUSE INJURY OR
DEATH TO AN ELEPHANT.
  2.  NO PERSON SHALL POSSESS ANY DEVICE WHICH EMITS AN ELECTRIC CURRENT
OR SHOCK OR ANY INSTRUMENT THAT MAY REASONABLY RESULT IN  DAMAGE,  SCAR-
RING  OR  BREAKAGE  TO  THE  SKIN  OF  AN ELEPHANT IN THE PRESENCE OF AN
ELEPHANT. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SUBDIVISION, SUCH IMPLEMENT OR DEVICE
INCLUDES, BUT IS NOT LIMITED TO, A BULLHOOK,  ANKUS,  OR  OTHER  SIMILAR
DEVICE.
  3. ANY VIOLATION OF THIS SECTION SHALL CONSTITUTE A CLASS E FELONY.
  4.  NOTHING  IN  THIS  SECTION  SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO AFFECT ANY OTHER
PROTECTIONS AFFORDED TO ELEPHANTS UNDER  ANY  OTHER  PROVISION  OF  THIS
CHAPTER OR ANY OTHER LAW.
  5.  NOTHING  CONTAINED  IN  THIS SECTION SHALL PREVENT ANY TOWN, CITY,
VILLAGE, OR COUNTY IN THE STATE FROM ENACTING A LOCAL LAW  OR  ORDINANCE
GOVERNING  OR  RESTRICTING  THE USE OF ELEPHANTS WITHIN SUCH TOWN, CITY,

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD06186-03-4

S. 6669                             2

VILLAGE, OR COUNTY PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT  NO  SUCH  LAW  OR  ORDINANCE
SHALL BE LESS STRINGENT THAN THIS SECTION.
  6.  NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO PROHIBIT A VETERINA-
RIAN FROM PERFORMING NECESSARY TREATMENT ON AN ELEPHANT.
  S 2. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day  after  it  shall
have become a law.

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