Pomona, NY – Senator David Carlucci (D-Rockland/Westchester) and Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski (D-New City) gathered at the Hudson Valley Humane Society (HVHS) in Pomona on Thursday to announce their legislation (S.8876/A.10815) to help prevent animal cruelty was signed into law by the Governor.
The bill will make it easier for the HVHS to dd volunteer SPCA Peace Officers to its Humane Law Enforcement Division by eliminating a Rockland County residency requirement. SPCA Peace Officers are certified by the state to work with law enforcement to investigate and help prosecute acts of animal cruelty, abuse, and neglect. The HVHS Peace Officers enforce the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets Laws and are authorized to make arrests, issue appearance tickets, and conduct warrantless searches and seizures in Rockland County.
“The Hudson Valley Humane Society has had difficulty finding people in Rockland who want to serve as SPCA Peace Officers. This legislation will remove the Rockland County residency requirement and open SPCA Peace Officer opportunities to qualified residents in neighboring Westchester and Orange Counties,” said Senator David Carlucci. “Our goal is to help protect animals and end abuse. To do that we need the Hudson Valley Humane Society to have additional qualified candidates to help investigate animal cruelty cases like dog fighting and puppy mills. We thank the Hudson Valley Humane Society for their support of this legislation and their work to prevent animal cruelty."
“Allowing our neighbors in Orange and Westchester Counties to serve as Peace Officers for the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) only strengthens our efforts to prevent animal cruelty here in Rockland. We need the most qualified individuals possible thwarting and investigating these awful crimes. I thank the Hudson Valley Humane Society for working with us to make this legislation a reality and for their tireless efforts to keep animals safe,” said Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski.
“Many constituents contact my office with serious concerns about the well-being of animals in the county. Too often, we forget the vital role animals play in our lives, especially in the lives of our veterans, those with disabilities, and the law enforcement community. I am proud to stand with Senator Carlucci, Assemblyman Zebrowski and the Hudson Valley Humane Society as a co-sponsor of this legislation that addresses concerns and strengthens critical protections against animal abuse in Rockland County,” said Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffee (D-Suffern).
“Senator Carlucci, Assemblyman Zebrowski and Assemblywoman Jaffee did what good leaders do, they really listened to the challenges the Hudson Valley Humane Society was up against with the residency requirement and they took action,” said Hudson Valley Humane Society President and Humane Law Enforcement Agent, Ann Marie Gaudio. Gaudio continued, “They recognize and appreciate the services the HVHS provides to our community.”
The HVHS’s Humane Law Enforcement Division currently has three SPCA Peace Officers and typically responds to about 20 complaints a month. Now that the law has been changed, the HVHS can expand their work.
The community is urged to report acts of animal cruelty to the Hudson Valley Humane Society at (845) 354-3124 or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.