Public opinion: Kerr County, TX asks for input

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Public opinion: County to have hearing

Published February 24, 2009

The public will have its say about a revision to Kerr County’s “dangerous wild animal ordinance” currently under review by county commissioners. A public hearing is set for 10 a.m. Monday, March 23, in the commissioners’ courtroom at the courthouse.

The matter arose after a pet tiger escaped from its cage Jan. 18 in Ingram.

No one was hurt in connection with the incident, but officials agreed the situation easily could have gotten out of hand.

Precinct 4 Commissioner Bruce Oehler, who represents the area where the tiger is housed, has expressed a desire for “an outright ban” on “certain dangerous and exotic animals.”

“It is time to change the ordinance with the population growing,” he said during Monday’s county commission meeting.  

But he doesn’t believe all such animals should be banned and said he is in favor of “grandfathering” those that already are in the county — as long as they are licensed, permitted and kept in proper enclosures.

Currently, it is legal to own a “dangerous wild animal” in unincorporated areas of the county as long as the animal is registered. 

The order passed by commissioners in 2001 requires the registration of 20 animal types, which includes tigers, lions, cougars, leopards, cheetahs, bobcats and others.

State law requires “dangerous wild animals” to have a primary enclosure, such as a cage or pen, as well as perimeter fencing around the cage that restricts public access.

Kerr County Animal Control is required by the state to inspect such enclosures each year. But according to Times’ archives, director Janie Roman said her office will inspect them every other month.

For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

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