BRANSON, Mo. (KY3) – Years of debate over a proposed animal ordinance in Branson have come to an end.
City leaders rejected the six-to-zero proposal Tuesday night. Branson’s animal ordinance has been on hold since it was originally proposed in 2019.
Groups like Shepherd of the Hills Humane Society say they are not surprised by Tuesday’s decision.
“It went through such a long history of revisions and going to meetings and then being postponed and rewritten and postponed that it kind of wasn’t a shock that it didn’t pass,” Jayme said. Tabuchi, director of Shepherd of the Hills Humane Society. .
But after months of uncertainty, the group is still disappointed. The ordinance has not been updated since the 1990s.
“Overall, these ordinances are so old that they really need to be reviewed,” Tabuchi said. “The things in there that people seem to have the most trouble with were really just things that were there to protect them and their animals.”
The proposal covered a wide range of issues from requiring dogs and cats to be licensed to limiting the number of animals a person can own. Many locals have expressed concern about some of these issues.
City leaders at Tuesday’s meeting ultimately decided the proposal was too broad.
“When I read this initially, I think there’s a lot of good in it,” Alderman Cody Fenton said at Tuesday’s meeting. “Then there are a lot of things where I scratch my head on a personal level. I think I said it every time we talked about it.
City leaders said the discussion should still continue, but perhaps addressing issue by issue instead of a sweeping order.
Tabuchi said growing issues such as stray animals still require special attention.
“I think overall the number of animals that are abandoned or abandoned is phenomenal,” she said. “We have seen such adoption over the past year or more. It is essential that we have something to do with these animals, because right now everyone is overwhelmed. All the shelters, all the rescues, we’re all full. So having something to do with them, you know, a place to go with them is helpful.
Tabuchi said the order was meant to protect pet owners, not limit their rights. She hopes the problem will come back down the road.
City leaders also said they wanted to give people more voice on some of the issues. At this time, the city said there is no scheduled community discussion yet on the books.
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