Texas Humane Legislation Network
For immediate release: May 31, 2003
For more information contact:  Cile Holloway (972) 668-9962 or (214) 537-3531
or Robert "Skip" Trimble (214) 855-2960 or (214) 212-5736
Senators Vote to Keep Animal Felony Cruelty Law
The "Loco" Law is Safe for Another Two Years
Austin, TX -- Efforts to repeal the "Loco" law, also known as the Animal Felony Cruelty law, have now been abandoned.  Late this afternoon, State Senator Kyle Janek (R-Houston), the sponsor of the amendment, agreed to pull the unfriendly amendment from House Bill 1119. Senator Janek joined two of the five Senate committee members in agreeing to recommend HB 1119, an animal protection bill, without language that would repeal the "Loco" law. 
Now animal protection groups and hundreds of animal control agencies throughout Texas are counting on Senator Kim Brimer (R-Fort Worth), the Senate sponsor of HB 1119, to carry the bill through the Senate Sunday for final enactment. 
If passed, HB 1119, sponsored by State. Rep. Toby Goodman (R-Arlington), will assist county and municipal authorities in their efforts to seize animals that are being starved or otherwise cruelly treated. This bill facilitates seizure of the animals, shortens the judicial process, and allows counties and municipalities to recover their court costs and other expenses related to the seizures. The bill in its original form has been endorsed by both county and municipal government officials. 
The Animal Felony Cruelty bill was signed into law by Governor Rick Perry in 2001.  Also known as the "Loco" law, aggravated acts of animal cruelty are now punishable by jail sentences including:  torturing, killing, seriously injuring, or poisoning an animal; causing one animal to fight with another; using a live animal as a lure in dog race training or in dog coursing on a race track.