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Updated Feb 11, 2014 - 5:23 pm

Arizona committee moves livestock cruelty bill

PHOENIX — A bill that strips local law enforcement from enforcing animal
cruelty laws on farms and other livestock operations has been moved forward by
an Arizona legislative committee.

House Bill 2587 sponsored by Rep. Kate Brophy McGee also requires anyone who
has photographic or video evidence of animal cruelty to report to authorities
within five days.

An amendment introduced on Tuesday would allow the state Department of
Agriculture to coordinate with local law enforcement on some cases of abuse.

But police say that amendment doesn’t do enough to restore power to local
officers.

The committee approved the bill by a 6-2 vote after more than an hour of
emotional testimony from supporters, who say the bill helps relieve resources
for investigating domestic animal abuse.

Opponents say it violates free-speech rights.

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