The proposal for the new ordinance still bans pit bulls within the city but amends the original restricted breed ban put in place in 2005 to allow them as service dogs for people with disabilities.
The new ordinance, which they will formally vote on later this month, complies with the new Department of Justice rules regarding the Americans with Disabilities Act that require municipalities to allow pit bulls as service dogs as of March 15.
Council members talked about the issue at their lengthy annual winter workshop which started at 8:30 a.m. and concluded at 4 p.m. Talks about council goals and objectives preceded the pit bull discussion.
About 8 pit bull advocates attended the meeting and were waiting for the issue to come up since early this morning.
In addition to moving forward with the service dog proposal, council members also said they would like to revisit their current restricted breed ban ordinance within three council meetings. Councilwoman Renie Petersen suggested they have a "dangerous animal" ordinance instead of a breed-specific ban. There are currently seven restricted breeds in the ordinance that include American Bulldogs, Canary Dogs, Cane Crosos and Presa Mallorquins.
Also, more than half of the council members said they would like to narrow the list from the 7 restricted breeds in their breed ban.
None of the pit bull supporters who attended the meeting were residents of Aurora, but they wanted to show their support for their dogs and condemn breed-specific ban ordinances in general.
Some of them saw the council's actions as a step forward but others were disappointed that they didn't vote to uplift the restricted breed ban.
As council and staff members left the building, the group of pit bull advocates talked about the issue with Mayor Ed Tauer and Councilman Bob FitzGerald.
|Monica Kennedy, a pit bull owner, poses for a picture with a photo of her furry friend at the Aurora Municipal Center. She lives in Wheat Ridge.|