Legislative Alerts

2015 Legislation 
Dec 24, 2014 Updated December 23, 2015

The following legislation has been carried over from 2014 or has been prefiled or introduced for 2015:

FEDERAL: Big Cat Public Safety Act (HR 3546) Bans ownership of big cat species. 

Status: Referred to Natural Resources 9/17/2015.  Referred to Federal Lands Subcommittee 10/6/2015.  Carried into 2016. 

FEDERAL: Captive Primate Safety Act (HR 2920) Bans commerce of primates and direct public contact with all prohibited wildlife species

Status: Referred to Natural Resources 6/25/2015.  Referred to Federal Lands Subcommittee 7/14/2015.  Carried into 2016. 

FEDERAL: Agency Rule – Petition to amend Animal Welfare Act regulations to prohibit public contact with big cats, bears and nonhuman primates (APHIS 2012-0107-0002). 

Status: Comments due November 18, 2013.

ALABAMA: …Regulation of public exhibition of wildlife, additional fee authorized, exemptions revised (SB 39)

Status: DEAD

COLORADO: Issue Paper – Chapter 11 – Wildlife Parks and Unregulated Wildlife.  Allows wildlife sanctuaries to take in nonreleasable animals from wild of another state. 

Status: Adopted on 3/4/2015. 

GEORGIA: Sales and use tax; materials to be used in certain construction projects of zoological institutions; extend exemption (HB 428

Status: Signed into law 5/5/2015.

HAWAII: Penal code; Display or Performance of wild or exotic animals (HB 1012/SB 141).   Prohibits displays unless in the state at least 300 days.

Status: HB 1012: Carred into 2016. 

Status SB 141: Carried into 2016. 

ILLINOIS: CRIM CD – Dangerous Animals (SB 1824). Prohibits USDA Class C from acquiring new larger cats. 

Status: Passed Senate 4/16/2015.  Carried into 2016. 

ILLINOIS: Animal Control – Database (SB 1362).  Creates first responder database for owners of dangerous wild animals. 

Status: Carried into 2016. 

INDIANA: Agency Rule – Permit/Commercial License Rule Affects wildlife rehabilitation and first permit to possess wild animal sections 

Status: Adopted.

INDIANA: Wild animal Permits (S 226– removes commercial animal dealer exemption and allows single permit per facility.   

Status: FAILED IN COMMITTEE 1/26/15.

IOWA: Providing for an Iowa individual income tax checkoff for qualified Iowa zoos (HF 37).  AZA zoos not research institutions

Status: Carried into 2016. 

KANSAS: Allowing contact with certain regulated animals. (SB 97).  Allows public contact with large cats and removes clouded leopards and cheetah from list. 

Status: Carried into 2016. 

KANSAS: Amending statutes concerning regulated animals (HB 2293/SB 132).  Adds primates and wolves and amends the grandfather requirements and exemptions. 

Status: Carried into 2016. 

Louisiana: Agency Rule – Possession of Potentially Dangerous Wild Quadrupeds, Big Exotic Cats, and Non-human Primates Revises big cat inspections and adds definition for zoos. 

Status: Adopted January 2015.

MAINE: An act to restructure the permitting process for wildlife and exotic species in captivity (SP 501).

Status: Veto overridden 7/16/15.

MICHIGAN: Animals; Other; facilities accredited by American zoo and aquarium association or the zoological association of America; exempt from certain provisions of large carnivore act (SB 146).  Adds ZAA exemption but limits Class C to AZA, ZAA or certain sanctuaries. 

Status: Carried into 2016. 

MISSOURI: Exempts mini circuses from the licensing requirements of the Large Carnivore Act (HB 1264).  Creates a USDA Class C exemption for those temporarily in the state. 

Status: DEAD

NEBRASKA: Exempt Sales and purchases by zoos and aquariums from sales and use tax (LB 419).  AZA

Status: Signed into law 5/27/2015 

NEVADA: Enact provisions relating to captive wild animals (AB 361)

Status: DEAD

NEW JERSEY: Imposes certain registration and reporting requirements to prevent illegal trade of tigers (A 4092/S 678).

Status A 4092: Referred to Agriculture and Natural Resources 1/13/2015.

Status S 678: Referred to Economic Growth Committee 1/14/2014. Carried over into 2015.

NEW JERSEY: Requires liability insurance for permit to possess certain dangerous animals (S 381) $250,000

Status: Referred to Commerce 1/14/2014.  Carried over into 2015.

NEW JERSEY: “Licensed wildlife rehabilitator Act;” establishes licensure requirements for rehabilitators (A 3398/S 1576)

Status A 3398: Referred to Agriculture and Natural Resources 6/12/2014. Hearing 9/11 – CANCELLED. Carried into 2015

Status S 1576: Referred to Commerce 2/27/2014. Carried into 2015

NEW JERSEY: “Licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator Act;” establishes wildlife rehabilitation board and continuing education requirements and permit program for rehabilitators (S 1577)

Status: Referred to Commerce 2/27/2014.  Carried into 2015.

NEW MEXICO: Interference with zoo animals & cruelty (HB 300).  Makes it a crime for unauthorized entry into enclosure or contact with animals. 

Status: DEAD

NEW YORK: Relates to prohibitions on circus performances (A 637/S 1246). 

Status A 637: Carried into 2016.

Status S 1246: Carried into 2016. 

NEW YORK: Prohibits sport killing of zoo, carnival or circus animals (A 4239). 

Status: Referred to Environmental Conservation 1/29/2015. Carried into 2016. 

NEW YORK: Prohibits the sport killing of zoo, carnival or circus animals (A 4378)

Status: Referred to Environmental Conservation 1/30/2015. Carried into 2016. 

NEW YORK: Restricts the use of exotic and wild animals in traveling circuses and shows (A 1405/S 4635).  

Status A 1405: Referred to Agriculture 1/12/2015. Carried into 2016.

Status S 4635: Referred to Agriculture 4/1/2015. Carried into 2016.

NEW YORK: Prohibits the ownership, possession or harboring of a wild animal or reptile; makes violation a Class E felony (A 4786).

Status: Referred to Agriculture 2/6/2015. Carried into 2016.

NEW YORK: Relates to tax on circus admission; creates the animal cruelty compensation fund (A 1804). 

Status: Carried into 2016.

NORTH CAROLINA: Protect public from dangerous wild animals (H 554).  Bans dangerous wild animals = bears, primate, felines, hyenas 

Status: Passed House 4/30/2015.  Carried into 2016.

OKLAHOMA: Wildlife; Modifying provisions relating to keeping or exhibiting native cats or bears.  Effective date. Emergency (SB 776).  Bans Dangerous wild animals = bears, primates, larger cats

Status: Carried into 2016.

PENNSYLVANIA: … in special license and permits, further providing for definitions, for exotic wildlife possession permits (HB 349).

Status: Referred to Game and Fisheries 2/9/2015.

PENNSYLVANIA: … Special licenses and permits, further providing for definitions, for exotic wildlife possession permits and for menagerie permits (SB 263).  Ban on new wildlife possession permits.

Status: Referred to Game and Fisheries 1/16/2015.

PENNSYLVANIA: … Providing for the offense of use of live animals in traveling exhibitions (SB 968)

Status: Referred to Judiciary 4/23/2015.

TENNESSEE: Game and Fish Laws – As introduced, requires cages at facilities for holding Class I wildlife be constructed and maintained to provide sufficient space for each animal to have adequate freedom of movement (HB 1363/SB 1273)

Status HB 1363: Substituted with SB 1273.

Status SB 1273: Signed into law 4/28/2015.

TEXAS: Relating to the registration and regulation of dangerous wild animals (HB 3952)

Status: DEAD

TEXAS: Relating to the regulation of dangerous wild animals (HB 3243/SB 987). Creates a ZAA exemption. 

Status: DEAD

TEXAS: Relating to the cost of goods sold for purposes of the franchise tax for certain zoos and aquariums (HB 2139/SB 1118).  For AZA zoos.

Status: DEAD

TEXAS: Relating to establishment and function of the Animal Welfare Commission (HB 3963/SB 908).  Group charged with reviewing exotic animal ownership, circus animal welfare and other issues and giving recommended changes. 

Status: DEAD

WEST VIRGINIA: Authorizing Agriculture Commissioner promulgate legislative rule relating to dangerous wild animals (SB 222).  Bill to adopt the DWA rule and list. 

Status: Bundled into SB 199 – Signed into law 4/2/2015.

WEST VIRGINIA: Commissioner of Agriculture; Dangerous wild animals (HB 2361).  HB to adopt the DWA rule and list 

Status: Bundled into SB 199 – signed into law 4/2/2015.

WEST VIRGINIA: Agency Rule – Dangerous Wild Animals Rule (61-30). 

Status: Approved – Effective 6/1/2015

WEST VIRGINIA: Repealing Dangerous Wild Animals Act (SB 247). 


WISCONSIN: Relating to: the possession of certain wild animals and providing a penalty (AB 333/SB 241).  Ban on dangerous wild animals.

Status AB 333:  Referred to Consumer Protection 9/10/2015.  Public hearing 1/5/2016.  

Status SB 241:  Referred to Judiciary and Public Safety 8/26/2015.  Public hearing 10/1. Carried into 2016.