Friday, 4 Dec 2020

Denver voters repealed the city’s pit bull ban. What’s next?

Denver officials are preparing to welcome pit bulls back in city limits with 2J, the measure to repeal the city’s ban, leading by a comfortable enough margin to declare victory

Denver joins a nationwide trend to repeal legislation banning pit bulls, which many say discriminates against communities of color. The path toward repeal was rocky. Mayor Michael Hancock shot down Councilman Chris Herndon’s attempt to pass it via City Council earlier this year with his first and only veto in three terms. Herndon took it to voters instead, and it drew no major organized opposition leading up to the election.

The ban will officially be repealed on Jan. 1 and replaced with a type of restricted license.

Pit bull owners will be asked to bring their pets — a limit of two pit bulls per home — to the Denver Animal Shelter in Valverde for an assessment, which should take 30 to 45 minutes, city spokesman Kyle Wagner said in a release. The assessment will cost $25.

If a dog does not share a majority of its characteristics with typical pit bulls, it will be allowed in Denver without a restricted license, Wagner said. If its appearance does match a pit bull’s, the dog will be issued a breed-restricted permit.

That permit will include documentation for the name and address of the dog’s owner, emergency contacts, a description and recent photograph of the dog, and proof that it’s neutered or spayed, microchipped and vaccinated, Wagner said. The permit will cost an additional $30 annually.

Should the dog remain in Denver for three years without incident, the breed-restricted permit requirement can be removed, Wagner said.

Additional information is available online at denvergov.org.

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