[Fifth Reprint]

 

SENATE COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE FOR

SENATE, No. 63

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

217th LEGISLATURE

  ADOPTED JUNE 23, 2016

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  RAYMOND J. LESNIAK

District 20 (Union)

Senator  JAMES BEACH

District 6 (Burlington and Camden)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Senators Scutari, Weinberg, Stack and Cunningham

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Revises “Pet Purchase Protection Act” to establish new requirements for pet dealers and pet shops.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As amended by the General Assembly on February 15, 2017.

  

 

 

 


An Act concerning the sale of cats and dogs, amending and supplementing P.L.1999, c.336, and amending P.L.1941, c.151,  P.L.2011, c.142, and P.L.2015, c.7.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    (New section) The Legislature finds and declares that the “Pet Purchase Protection Act” was first enacted to attack the problem of pet shops in the State selling sick puppies supplied by large-scale, commercial breeding facilities; that, since its enactment, a significant number of cats and dogs are still sold at pet shops, over the Internet, and through brokers from large-scale, commercial breeding facilities where the health and welfare of the animals are not adequately provided for, commonly referred to as “kitten mills” and “puppy mills”; that, according to the Humane Society of the United States, an estimated 10,000 puppy mills produce more than 2,400,000 puppies each year in the United States; that the documented abuses endemic to kitten mills and puppy mills include overbreeding, inbreeding, minimal to non-existent veterinary care, and lack of adequate, nutritious food, water, shelter, socialization, space, and exercise; that the inhumane conditions in kitten mill and puppy mill facilities often lead to health and behavioral issues in the animals bred in those facilities; that, due to a lack of education about the kitten mill and puppy mill issue and, in some cases, misleading tactics of the seller, many consumers are unaware of these health and behavioral issues when purchasing a cat or dog; that the problem is exacerbated by consumers buying cats and dogs they have never seen, otherwise known as “sight-unseen purchases”; that, often, a consumer has not seen the conditions in which the cat or dog was born and raised, and the health and behavioral issues caused by these conditions may not present themselves until sometime after the purchase of the cat or dog; and that these health and behavioral issues can impose exorbitant financial and emotional costs on the consumer purchasing the cat or dog.

     In addition, the Legislature finds and declares that sight-unseen dog sales have increased dramatically in recent years due, in particular, to the Internet providing a new platform through which to sell dogs; that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently estimated that there are between 8,400 and 15,000 breeders selling dogs over the Internet; that breeders selling dogs over the Internet have largely been unregulated and, according to a 2010 USDA study, 81 percent of them are unlicensed; that when the USDA began regulating Internet sellers and other sight-unseen sales in 2013, it noted that there was a parallel increase in consumer complaints related to the inhumane treatment of animals and the dramatic rise in sight-unseen sales; that, despite the recently established requirement that people engaging in sight-unseen sales of cats and dogs obtain a USDA license, the majority of these people remain unlicensed and unregulated and only a few hundred new licenses have been issued since the rule took effect in 2013; that, even if all breeders selling cats or dogs sight-unseen were licensed and regulated by the USDA, this alone would not ensure the humane treatment and health of the animals because of under-enforcement of USDA requirements and lax federal regulatory standards of care; that a 2010 audit by the USDA Office of the Inspector General found that the agency’s enforcement of the federal Animal Welfare Act was ineffective in ensuring compliance with the minimal standards of care governing the humane treatment of animals in these facilities; and that pet shops remain unregulated by the USDA and current federal and State regulations do not properly address the sale of kitten mill cats or puppy mill dogs in New Jersey pet shops.

     The Legislature further finds and declares that New Jersey consumers routinely report purchasing sick dogs from pet dealers and pet shops; that hundreds of the dogs sold annually in New Jersey pet shops come from large-scale commercial breeders with significant and multiple USDA violations; that current federal Animal Welfare Act regulations promulgated by the USDA are inadequate to protect the health and welfare of breeding cats and their kittens or breeding dogs and their puppies; that, due in large part to overpopulation, every year approximately 21,000 cats and dogs are euthanized in New Jersey; that restructuring the regulation of the retail sale of kittens and puppies in the State would have a potentially large positive impact on the reduction of sales of sick animals and unnecessary euthanasia of animals; that this reduction would be achieved by 3[requiring new pet shops to sell cats and dogs obtained only from shelters, pounds, or animal rescue organizations and]3 extending to all pet dealers the requirements connected to USDA inspection violations and the sourcing of animals currently applied to pet shops under the “Pet Purchase Protection Act”; 3[that an emphasis on sourcing animals whenever possible from shelters, pounds, or animal rescue organizations is likely to increase demand for animals from these facilities; that this increased demand would decrease the number of animals euthanized and reduce the burden and costs for shelters, pounds, and organizations providing care and euthanasia for these animals as well as any costs to the State, local government, and taxpayers for these services; that across the country, thousands of independent pet shops and large chains operate profitably with a business model focused on the sale of pet services and supplies and not on the sale of cats and dogs; that many of these shops collaborate with local animal shelters and animal rescue organizations to offer space and support for showcasing adoptable homeless pets on their premises;]3 that the regulation of cat and dog sales as prescribed in P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.) would not affect a consumer’s ability to obtain the consumer’s choice of  a cat or dog directly from a breed-specific animal rescue organization or a shelter or pound, or from a breeder that meets basic standards of animal welfare.

     The Legislature therefore determines that it is in the best interests of the State and its citizens to reduce costs to the State, local government, and taxpayers, including the financial and emotional costs inflicted on the people who own and care for cats and dogs from kitten mills or puppy mills; promote community awareness of animal welfare; and foster a more humane environment in the State by adopting reasonable laws, policies, and regulations to better monitor and restrict the sources of cats and dogs sold by 4[3all3]4 pet dealers 3[and] doing business with New Jersey consumers, including3 pet shops.

 

     2.    Section 2 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-93) is amended to read as follows:

     2.    As used in P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.):

     "Animal" means a cat or dog.

     Animal rescue organization” means an animal rescue organization, as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1), which is involved in the placement of abandoned, unwanted, neglected, or abused animals, and that is also a tax exempt organization under paragraph (3) of subsection (c) of section 501 of the federal Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. s.501), or any subsequent corresponding sections of the federal Internal Revenue Code, as from time to time amended.

     "Animal rescue organization facility" means the home or other facility in which an animal rescue organization houses and cares for an animal.

     "Breeder" means any person, business, firm, corporation, or organization in the business of breeding cats or dogs.

     “Broker” means a person, business, firm, corporation, or organization who [sells] transfers a cat or dog [to a pet shop, whether or not the broker is also the breeder of the cat or dog] for the purpose of  resale by another person, business, firm, corporation, or organization.

     "Consumer" means a person purchasing a cat or dog not for the purposes of resale.

     "Director" means the Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety.

     "Division" means the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety.

     4[“Non-face-to-face 3[transaction] sale3 ” means a sale, 3[offer for sale,]3 transfer 3[, exchange, barter, or other transaction] of ownership, or brokering of a sale or transfer of ownership of a cat or dog,3 at which the breeder and the cat or dog are not physically present in the same location as the consumer at the time of the 3[transaction] sale or transfer3 .  A “non-face-to-face 3[transaction] sale3 ” shall include any transaction conducted by mail order, the Internet, telephone, at a pet shop, through a broker, or any other anonymous transaction method in which the consumer is not in the physical presence of the breeder and the cat or dog at the time of the transaction 3, sale, or transfer3.]

   "Kennel" means a kennel as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1) and licensed pursuant to section 8 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.8).4

     “Obtain an animal” means to come into possession or control of a cat or dog, including through birth, purchase, or other transfer of ownership.

     3[“Offer for sale” means to sell, offer for sale or adoption, barter, or auction, give away, or otherwise transfer ownership of a cat or dog.]3

     "Pet dealer" means any person, located within or outside of the State, who is engaged in the ordinary course of business in the sale of cats or dogs to [the public] consumers in the State for profit 3[and who is not the owner or operator of a pet shop located in the State and licensed pursuant to section 8 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.8)]3 , or [any person] who sells 3[or offers for sale]3 more than 5[five] 105 cats or dogs in one year to consumers in the State 4[in non-face-to-face]4 3[transactions] 4[sales]4 .3 “Pet dealer” shall include a 4kennel or4 pet shop 3[located outside of the State engaged in transferring into the State cats or dogs for resale, or otherwise offering for sale cats or dogs in the State]3  4that is engaged in the ordinary course of business in the sale of cats or dogs to consumers in the State for profit, or that sells more than 5[five] 105 cats or dogs in one year to consumers in the State4.

     "Pet shop" means a pet shop as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1) 3[, located in the State,]3 and licensed pursuant to section 8 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.8).

     “Pound” means a pound, as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1), that is maintained by or under contract with any state, county, or municipality.

     "Quarantine" means to hold in segregation from the general population any cat or dog because of the presence or suspected presence of a contagious or infectious disease.

     “Shelter” means a shelter, as defined in section 1 of P.L.1941,        c.151 (C.4:19-15.1), whose primary mission and practice is the placement of abandoned, unwanted, neglected, or abused animals, and that is also a tax exempt organization under paragraph (3) of subsection (c) of section 501 of the federal Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. s.501), or any subsequent corresponding sections of the federal Internal Revenue Code, as from time to time amended.

     "Unfit for purchase" means any disease, deformity, injury, physical condition, illness, or defect which is congenital or hereditary and severely affects the health of the animal, or which was manifest, capable of diagnosis, or likely contracted on or before the sale and delivery of the animal to the consumer.  The death of an animal within 14 days [of] after its delivery to the consumer, except by death by accident or as a result of injuries sustained during that period, shall mean the animal was unfit for purchase.

     "USDA" means the United States Department of Agriculture.

     "USDA license number" means the license number issued to a breeder or broker by the United States Department of Agriculture pursuant to the federal "Animal Welfare Act," 7 U.S.C. s.2131 et seq., or any rules or regulations adopted pursuant thereto.

     "Veterinarian" means a veterinarian licensed to practice in the 4[State of New Jersey] state where the pet shop or other pet dealer is located4 .

(cf:  P.L.2015, c.7, s.1)

 

     3.    Section 3 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-94) is amended to read as follows:

     3.    No provision of this act shall be construed in any way to alter, diminish, replace, or revoke [the requirements for pet dealers that are not pet shops or the rights of a consumer purchasing an animal from a pet dealer that is not a pet shop, as may be provided elsewhere in law or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto.  Except as provided in section 4 and  section 5 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95 and C.56:8-96), any provision of law pertaining to pet shops, or rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, shall continue to apply to pet shops. No provision of this act shall be construed in any way to alter, diminish, replace, or revoke] any recourse or remedy that is otherwise available to a consumer purchasing a cat or a dog from a 3[pet dealer or]3 4pet dealer or4 pet shop 4[3or any other pet dealer3]4 under any other law.

(cf:  P.L.1999, c.336, s.3)

 

     3[4. Section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95) is amended to read as follows:

     4.    a.  Notwithstanding the provisions of any rule or regulation adopted pursuant to [Title 56 of the Revised Statutes as such provisions are applied to pet shops,] P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) or any other law, and without limiting the prosecution of any other practices which may be unlawful pursuant to [Title 56 of the Revised Statutes, it shall be a deceptive] P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) or any other law, it shall be an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) for any owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, to sell [animals within] an animal to a consumer in the State without complying with the provisions and requirements of this section [and] , section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1), and any other applicable provisions, requirements, and prohibitions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.).

     b.    Within five days prior to the offering for sale of any animal, the owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, shall have the animal examined by a veterinarian licensed to practice in the State.  The name and address of the examining veterinarian, together with the findings made and treatment, if any, ordered as a result of the examination, shall be noted on the animal history and health certificate for each animal as required by regulations adopted pursuant to Title 56 of the Revised Statutes. If 14 days have passed since the last veterinarian examination of the animal, the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, shall have the animal reexamined by a veterinarian licensed to practice in the State as provided for in subsection g. of this section, except as otherwise provided in that subsection.

     c.     Every pet shop offering animals for sale shall post, in a conspicuous location on the cage or enclosure for each animal in the cage or enclosure, a sign declaring:

     (1)   The date and place of birth of each animal, and the actual age, or approximate age as established by a veterinarian, of the animal;

     (2)   The sex, color markings, and other identifying information of the animal, including any tag, tattoo, collar number, or microchip information;

     (3)   The name and address of the veterinarian attending to the animal while the animal is in the custody of the pet shop, and the date of the initial examination of the animal;

     (4)   The first and last name of the breeder of the animal, the full street address of where the breeder is doing business, an email address, if available, by which to contact the breeder, the breeder's USDA license number, and, if the breeder is required to be licensed in the state in which the breeder is located, the breeder's state license number;

     (5)   If the broker is different from the breeder, the first and last name of the broker of the animal, the full street address of where the broker is doing business, an email address, if available, by which to contact the broker, the USDA license number of the broker, and, if the broker is required to be licensed in the state in which the broker is located, the broker's state license number; and

     (6)   [The statement "Know Your Rights" in bold type face and no less than 12 point type, followed by the statement in no less than 10 point type, "State law requires that every pet shop offering cats or dogs for sale post in a conspicuous location on or near each cat or dog's cage or enclosure the USDA inspection reports for the breeder and broker of each cat or dog for the two years prior to the first day that the cat or dog is offered for sale.  If you do not see a required inspection report, please request the report from the pet shop. If you have any concerns, please contact the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, 124 Halsey St., Newark, NJ 07102, (973) 504-6200. You may also view these and other USDA inspection reports for the breeder and broker of each cat or dog on the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) website. You are entitled to receive additional information from APHIS about the breeder's or broker's history through the federal Freedom of Information Act."

     Every pet shop offering animals for sale shall also post, in a conspicuous location on or near the cage or enclosure for each animal in the cage or enclosure, the USDA inspection reports for the breeder and the broker of the animal for the two years prior to the first day that the animal is offered for sale by the pet shop] USDA inspection reports for the breeder and broker of each cat or dog for the two years prior to the date on which the cat or dog was first offered for sale at the pet shop.

     The owner or operator of the pet shop shall regularly update the information required to be posted pursuant to this subsection and make changes as necessary to all signage required by this subsection so that the public has access to the correct information at all times.

     It is a violation of this section for the pet shop to fail to post the required information, to post the required information at any location other than on the cage or enclosure for each animal, or to deny such information to any person upon request.

     d.    The owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, shall quarantine any animal diagnosed as suffering from a contagious or infectious disease, illness, or condition and may not sell such an animal until such time as a veterinarian licensed to practice in the State treats the animal and determines that such animal is free of clinical signs of infectious disease or that the animal is fit for sale.  All animals required to be quarantined pursuant to this subsection shall be placed in a quarantine area, separated from the general animal population of the pet shop.

     e.     The owner or operator of a pet shop, or designated employee thereof, may inoculate and vaccinate animals prior to purchase only upon the order of a veterinarian.  No owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, may represent, directly or indirectly, that the owner or operator of the pet shop, or any employee thereof, other than a veterinarian, is qualified to, directly or indirectly, diagnose, prognose, treat, or administer for, prescribe any treatment for, operate concerning, manipulate or apply any apparatus or appliance for addressing, any disease, pain, deformity, defect, injury, wound, or physical condition of any animal after purchase of the animal, for the prevention of, or to test for, the presence of any disease, pain, deformity, defect, injury, wound, or physical condition in an animal after its purchase.  These prohibitions include, but are not limited to, the giving of inoculations or vaccinations after purchase, the diagnosing, prescribing, and dispensing of medication to animals, and the prescribing of any diet or dietary supplement as treatment for any disease, pain, deformity, defect, injury, wound, or physical condition.

     f.     The Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety shall provide each owner or operator of a pet shop with notification forms, to be signed by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, and the consumer at the time of purchase of an animal.  The notification form shall provide the following:

     (1)   The full text of the rights and responsibilities provided for in subsection h. of this section;

     (2)   The full text and description of the recourse to which the consumer is entitled pursuant to subsection i. of this section;

     (3)   The statement that it is the responsibility of the consumer to obtain such certification within the required amount of time provided by subsection h. of this section;

     (4)   The full text of the rights and responsibilities of the owner or operator of the pet shop, and the employees thereof, and the consumer provided in subsection l. of this section;

     (5)   The notification, reporting and enforcement provisions provided in section 5 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-96), including the name and address of the local health authority with jurisdiction over the pet shop;

     (6)   The name, full street address, email address, if available, and USDA license number of the breeder of the animal and the broker of the animal, if the broker is different from the breeder;

     (7)   The breeder's state license number, if the breeder is required to be licensed in the state in which the breeder is located, and, if the broker is different from the breeder and the broker is required to be licensed in the state in which the broker is located, the broker's state license number; and

     (8)   An attestation by the owner or operator of the pet shop that, as of the date of purchase of the animal by the pet shop, which shall be specified in the attestation, the breeder and the broker of the animal were in compliance with the requirements concerning the maintenance and care of animals and the sanitary operation of kennels, pet shops, shelters and pounds established in rules and regulations adopted pursuant to section 14 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.14), as required pursuant to section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1).

     The owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall obtain the signature of the consumer on the form and shall also sign and date the form at the time of purchase of an animal by the consumer, and shall provide the consumer with a signed copy of the form and retain a copy of the form on the pet shop premises.  Copies of all such notices shall be readily available for inspection by an authorized representative of the Division of Consumer Affairs, upon request.  No pet shop owner or operator, or employee thereof, may construe or use the signed notification form required pursuant to this subsection as an abdication of the right to recourse provided for in subsection i., or as a selection of recourse pursuant to subsection k. of this section.

     g.    The owner or operator of a pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall have any animal that has been examined more than 14 days prior to the date of purchase, reexamined by a veterinarian for the purpose of disclosing its condition, within 72 hours of the delivery of the animal to the consumer, unless the consumer has waived the right to the reexamination in writing. The owner or operator of a pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall provide a copy of the written waiver to the consumer prior to the signing of any contract or agreement to purchase the animal and the written waiver shall be in the form established by the director by regulation.

     h.    If at any time within 14 days after the sale and delivery of an animal to a consumer, the animal becomes sick or dies and a veterinarian certifies, within the 14 days after the date of purchase of the animal by the consumer, that the animal is unfit for purchase due to a non-congenital cause or condition, or that the animal died from causes other than an accident, the consumer is entitled to the recourse described in subsection i. of this section.

     If the animal becomes sick or dies within 180 days after the date of purchase and a veterinarian certifies, within the 180 days after the date of purchase of the animal by the consumer, that the animal is unfit for sale due to a congenital or hereditary cause or condition, or a sickness brought on by a congenital or hereditary cause or condition, or died from such a cause or condition or sickness, the consumer shall be entitled to the recourse provided in subsection i. of this section.

     It shall be the responsibility of the consumer to obtain such certification within the required amount of time provided by this subsection, unless the owner or operator of the pet shop, or the employee thereof selling the animal to the consumer, fails to provide the notice required pursuant to subsection f. of this section.  If the owner or operator of the pet shop, or the employee thereof, fails to provide the required notice, the consumer shall be entitled to the recourse provided for in subsection i. of this section.

     i.     Only the consumer shall have the sole authority to determine the recourse the consumer wishes to select and accept, provided that the recourse selected is one of the following:

     (1)   The right to return the animal and receive a full refund of the purchase price, including sales tax, plus the reimbursement of the veterinary fees, including the cost of the veterinarian certification, incurred prior to the receipt by the consumer of the veterinarian certification;

     (2)   The right to retain the animal and to receive reimbursement for veterinary fees incurred prior to the consumer's receipt of the veterinarian certification, plus the future cost of veterinary fees to be incurred in curing or attempting to cure the animal, including the cost of the veterinarian certification;

     (3)   The right to return the animal and to receive in exchange an animal of the consumer's choice, of equivalent value, plus reimbursement of veterinary fees, including the cost of the veterinarian certification, incurred prior to the consumer's receipt of the veterinarian certification; or

     (4)   In the event of the death of the animal from causes other than an accident, the right to a full refund of the purchase price of the animal, including sales tax, or another animal of the consumer's choice of equivalent value, plus reimbursement of veterinary fees, including the cost of the veterinarian certification, incurred prior to the death of the animal.

     The consumer shall be entitled to be reimbursed an amount for veterinary fees up to and including two times the purchase price, including sales tax, of the sick or dead animal.  No reimbursement of veterinary fees shall exceed two times the purchase price, including sales tax, of the sick or dead animal.

     j.     The veterinarian shall provide to the consumer in writing and within the seven days after the consumer consults with the veterinarian any certification that is appropriate pursuant to this section upon the determination that such certification is appropriate.  The certification shall include:

     (1)   The name of the owner;

     (2)   The date or dates of examination;

     (3)   The breed, color, sex, and age of the animal;

     (4)   A statement of the findings of the veterinarian;

     (5)   A statement that the veterinarian certifies the animal to be "unfit for purchase";

     (6)   An itemized statement of veterinary fees incurred as of the date of certification;

     (7)   If the animal may be curable, an estimate of the possible cost to cure, or attempt to cure, the animal;

     (8)   If the animal has died, a statement establishing the probable cause of death; and

     (9)   The name and address of the certifying veterinarian and the date of the certification.

     k.    Upon the presentation of the veterinarian certification required in subsection j. of this section to the pet shop, the consumer shall select the recourse to be provided and the owner or operator of the pet shop, or the employee thereof, shall confirm the selection of recourse in writing.  The confirmation of the selection shall be signed by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, and the consumer and a copy of the signed confirmation shall be given to the consumer and retained by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, on the pet shop premises. The confirmation of the selection shall be in the form established by the director by regulation.

     l.     The owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall comply with the selection of recourse by the consumer no later than 10 days after the receipt of the veterinarian certification and the signed confirmation of selection of recourse form.  In the event the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, wishes to contest the selection of recourse of the consumer, the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall notify the consumer and the director in writing within the five days after the receipt of the veterinarian certification and the signed confirmation of selection of recourse form.  After notification to the consumer and the director of the division, the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, may require the consumer to produce the animal for examination by a veterinarian chosen by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, at a mutually convenient time and place, except if the animal has died and was required to be cremated for public health reasons.  The director shall set, upon receipt of such notice of contest on the part of the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, a hearing date and hold a hearing, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.) and the Uniform Administrative Procedure Rules adopted pursuant thereto, to determine whether the recourse selected by the consumer should be allowed.  The consumer and the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, shall be entitled to any appeal of the decision resulting from the hearing as may be provided for under the law, or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, but upon the exhaustion of such remedies and recourse, the consumer and the owner or operator of the pet shop shall comply with the final decision rendered.

     m.   Any owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, shall be guilty of [a deceptive] an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.),  if the owner or operator, or employee thereof, secures or attempts to secure a waiver of any of the provisions of this section except as specifically authorized under subsection g. of this section.

     n.    The owner of a pet shop shall be responsible and liable for any recourse or reimbursement due to a consumer because of violations of any provisions of this section by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or any employee thereof, or because of any document signed pursuant to this section by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or any employee thereof.

     o.    Any pet shop in the State advertising for sale an animal bred by a USDA licensed breeder through print or electronic means, including those posted on the Internet or a website, shall continuously display the name, state of residence, and USDA license number of the breeder of the animal in the advertisement so that this information is easily legible to the consumer.

(cf:  P.L.2015, c.7, s.2)]3

 

     34.   Section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95) is amended to read as follows:

     4.    a.  Notwithstanding the provisions of any rule or regulation adopted pursuant to [Title 56 of the Revised Statutes as such provisions are applied to pet shops,] P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) or any other law, and without limiting the prosecution of any other practices which may be unlawful pursuant to [Title 56 of the Revised Statutes, it shall be a deceptive] P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) or any other law, it shall be an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) for any owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, to sell [animals within] an animal to a consumer in the State without complying with the provisions and requirements of this section [and] , section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1), and any other applicable provisions, requirements, and prohibitions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.).

     b.    Within five days prior to the offering for sale of any animal, the owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, shall have the animal examined by a veterinarian licensed to practice in the State.  The name and address of the examining veterinarian, together with the findings made and treatment, if any, ordered as a result of the examination, shall be noted on the animal history and health certificate for each animal as required by regulations adopted pursuant to Title 56 of the Revised Statutes. If 14 days have passed since the last veterinarian examination of the animal, the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, shall have the animal reexamined by a veterinarian licensed to practice in the State as provided for in subsection g. of this section, except as otherwise provided in that subsection.

     c.     Every pet shop offering animals for sale shall post, in a conspicuous location on the cage or enclosure for each animal in the cage or enclosure, a sign declaring:

     (1)   The date and place of birth of each animal, and the actual age, or approximate age as established by a veterinarian, of the animal;

     (2)   The sex, color markings, and other identifying information of the animal, including any tag, tattoo, collar number, or microchip information;

     (3)   The name and address of the veterinarian attending to the animal while the animal is in the custody of the pet shop, and the date of the initial examination of the animal;

     (4)   The first and last name of the breeder of the animal, the full street address of where the breeder is doing business, an email address, if available, by which to contact the breeder, the breeder's USDA license number, and, if the breeder is required to be licensed in the state in which the breeder is located, the breeder's state license number;

     (5)   If the broker is different from the breeder, the first and last name of the broker of the animal, the full street address of where the broker is doing business, an email address, if available, by which to contact the broker, the USDA license number of the broker, and, if the broker is required to be licensed in the state in which the broker is located, the broker's state license number; and

     (6)   The statement "Know Your Rights" in bold type face and no less than 12 point type, followed by the statement in no less than 10 point type, "State law requires that every pet shop offering cats or dogs for sale post in a conspicuous location on [or near] each cat or dog's cage or enclosure the USDA inspection reports for the breeder and broker of each cat or dog for the 5[two] three5 years prior to the first day that the cat or dog is offered for sale.  If you do not see a required inspection report, please request the report from the pet shop. If you have any concerns, please contact the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, 124 Halsey St., Newark, NJ 07102, (973) 504-6200. You may also view these and other USDA inspection reports for the breeder and broker of each cat or dog on the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) website. You are entitled to receive additional information from APHIS about the breeder's or broker's history through the federal Freedom of Information Act."

     Every pet shop offering animals for sale shall also post, in a conspicuous location on [or near] the cage or enclosure for each animal in the cage or enclosure, the USDA inspection reports for the breeder and the broker of the animal for the 5[two] three5 years prior to the first day that the animal is offered for sale by the pet shop.

     The owner or operator of the pet shop shall regularly update the information required to be posted pursuant to this subsection and make changes as necessary to all signage required by this subsection so that the public has access to the correct information at all times.

     It is a violation of this section for the pet shop to fail to post the required information, to post the required information at any location other than on the cage or enclosure for each animal, or to deny such information to any person upon request.

     d.    The owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, shall quarantine any animal diagnosed as suffering from a contagious or infectious disease, illness, or condition and may not sell such an animal until such time as a veterinarian licensed to practice in the State treats the animal and determines that such animal is free of clinical signs of infectious disease or that the animal is fit for sale.  All animals required to be quarantined pursuant to this subsection shall be placed in a quarantine area, separated from the general animal population of the pet shop.

     e.     The owner or operator of a pet shop, or designated employee thereof, may inoculate and vaccinate animals prior to purchase only upon the order of a veterinarian.  No owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, may represent, directly or indirectly, that the owner or operator of the pet shop, or any employee thereof, other than a veterinarian, is qualified to, directly or indirectly, diagnose, prognose, treat, or administer for, prescribe any treatment for, operate concerning, manipulate or apply any apparatus or appliance for addressing, any disease, pain, deformity, defect, injury, wound, or physical condition of any animal after purchase of the animal, for the prevention of, or to test for, the presence of any disease, pain, deformity, defect, injury, wound, or physical condition in an animal after its purchase.  These prohibitions include, but are not limited to, the giving of inoculations or vaccinations after purchase, the diagnosing, prescribing, and dispensing of medication to animals, and the prescribing of any diet or dietary supplement as treatment for any disease, pain, deformity, defect, injury, wound, or physical condition.

     f.     The Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety shall provide each owner or operator of a pet shop with notification forms, to be signed by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, and the consumer at the time of purchase of an animal.  The notification form shall provide the following:

     (1)   The full text of the rights and responsibilities provided for in subsection h. of this section;

     (2)   The full text and description of the recourse to which the consumer is entitled pursuant to subsection i. of this section;

     (3)   The statement that it is the responsibility of the consumer to obtain such certification within the required amount of time provided by subsection h. of this section;

     (4)   The full text of the rights and responsibilities of the owner or operator of the pet shop, and the employees thereof, and the consumer provided in subsection l. of this section;

     (5)   The notification, reporting and enforcement provisions provided in section 5 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-96), including the name and address of the local health authority with jurisdiction over the pet shop;

     (6)   The name, full street address, email address, if available, and USDA license number of the breeder of the animal and the broker of the animal, if the broker is different from the breeder;

     (7)   The breeder's state license number, if the breeder is required to be licensed in the state in which the breeder is located, and, if the broker is different from the breeder and the broker is required to be licensed in the state in which the broker is located, the broker's state license number; and

     (8)   An attestation by the owner or operator of the pet shop that, as of the date of purchase of the animal by the pet shop, which shall be specified in the attestation, the breeder and the broker of the animal were in compliance with the requirements concerning the maintenance and care of animals and the sanitary operation of kennels, pet shops, shelters and pounds established in rules and regulations adopted pursuant to section 14 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.14), as required pursuant to section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1).

     The owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall obtain the signature of the consumer on the form and shall also sign and date the form at the time of purchase of an animal by the consumer, and shall provide the consumer with a signed copy of the form and retain a copy of the form on the pet shop premises.  Copies of all such notices shall be readily available for inspection by an authorized representative of the Division of Consumer Affairs, upon request.  No pet shop owner or operator, or employee thereof, may construe or use the signed notification form required pursuant to this subsection as an abdication of the right to recourse provided for in subsection i. of this section, or as a selection of recourse pursuant to subsection k. of this section.

     g.    The owner or operator of a pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall have any animal that has been examined more than 14 days prior to the date of purchase, reexamined by a veterinarian for the purpose of disclosing its condition, within 72 hours of the delivery of the animal to the consumer, unless the consumer has waived the right to the reexamination in writing. The owner or operator of a pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall provide a copy of the written waiver to the consumer prior to the signing of any contract or agreement to purchase the animal and the written waiver shall be in the form established by the director by regulation.

     h.    If at any time within 14 days after the sale and delivery of an animal to a consumer, the animal becomes sick or dies and a veterinarian certifies, within the 14 days after the date of purchase of the animal by the consumer, that the animal is unfit for purchase due to a non-congenital cause or condition, or that the animal died from causes other than an accident, the consumer is entitled to the recourse described in subsection i. of this section.

     If the animal becomes sick or dies within 180 days after the date of purchase and a veterinarian certifies, within the 180 days after the date of purchase of the animal by the consumer, that the animal is unfit for sale due to a congenital or hereditary cause or condition, or a sickness brought on by a congenital or hereditary cause or condition, or died from such a cause or condition or sickness, the consumer shall be entitled to the recourse provided in subsection i. of this section.

     It shall be the responsibility of the consumer to obtain such certification within the required amount of time provided by this subsection, unless the owner or operator of the pet shop, or the employee thereof selling the animal to the consumer, fails to provide the notice required pursuant to subsection f. of this section.  If the owner or operator of the pet shop, or the employee thereof, fails to provide the required notice, the consumer shall be entitled to the recourse provided for in subsection i. of this section.

     i.     Only the consumer shall have the sole authority to determine the recourse the consumer wishes to select and accept, provided that the recourse selected is one of the following:

     (1)   The right to return the animal and receive a full refund of the purchase price, including sales tax, plus the reimbursement of the veterinary fees, including the cost of the veterinarian certification, incurred prior to the receipt by the consumer of the veterinarian certification;

     (2)   The right to retain the animal and to receive reimbursement for veterinary fees incurred prior to the consumer's receipt of the veterinarian certification, plus the future cost of veterinary fees to be incurred in curing or attempting to cure the animal, including the cost of the veterinarian certification;

     (3)   The right to return the animal and to receive in exchange an animal of the consumer's choice, of equivalent value, plus reimbursement of veterinary fees, including the cost of the veterinarian certification, incurred prior to the consumer's receipt of the veterinarian certification; or

     (4)   In the event of the death of the animal from causes other than an accident, the right to a full refund of the purchase price of the animal, including sales tax, or another animal of the consumer's choice of equivalent value, plus reimbursement of veterinary fees, including the cost of the veterinarian certification, incurred prior to the death of the animal.

     The consumer shall be entitled to be reimbursed an amount for veterinary fees up to and including two times the purchase price, including sales tax, of the sick or dead animal.  No reimbursement of veterinary fees shall exceed two times the purchase price, including sales tax, of the sick or dead animal.

     j.     The veterinarian shall provide to the consumer in writing and within the seven days after the consumer consults with the veterinarian any certification that is appropriate pursuant to this section upon the determination that such certification is appropriate.  The certification shall include:

     (1)   The name of the owner;

     (2)   The date or dates of examination;

     (3)   The breed, color, sex, and age of the animal;

     (4)   A statement of the findings of the veterinarian;

     (5)   A statement that the veterinarian certifies the animal to be "unfit for purchase";

     (6)   An itemized statement of veterinary fees incurred as of the date of certification;

     (7)   If the animal may be curable, an estimate of the possible cost to cure, or attempt to cure, the animal;

     (8)   If the animal has died, a statement establishing the probable cause of death; and

     (9)   The name and address of the certifying veterinarian and the date of the certification.

     k.    Upon the presentation of the veterinarian certification required in subsection j. of this section to the pet shop, the consumer shall select the recourse to be provided and the owner or operator of the pet shop, or the employee thereof, shall confirm the selection of recourse in writing.  The confirmation of the selection shall be signed by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, and the consumer and a copy of the signed confirmation shall be given to the consumer and retained by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, on the pet shop premises. The confirmation of the selection shall be in the form established by the director by regulation.

     l.     The owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall comply with the selection of recourse by the consumer no later than 10 days after the receipt of the veterinarian certification and the signed confirmation of selection of recourse form.  In the event the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, wishes to contest the selection of recourse of the consumer, the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, shall notify the consumer and the director in writing within the five days after the receipt of the veterinarian certification and the signed confirmation of selection of recourse form.  After notification to the consumer and the director of the division, the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, may require the consumer to produce the animal for examination by a veterinarian chosen by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, at a mutually convenient time and place, except if the animal has died and was required to be cremated for public health reasons.  The director shall set, upon receipt of such notice of contest on the part of the owner or operator of the pet shop, or an employee thereof, a hearing date and hold a hearing, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.) and the Uniform Administrative Procedure Rules adopted pursuant thereto, to determine whether the recourse selected by the consumer should be allowed.  The consumer and the owner or operator of the pet shop, or employee thereof, shall be entitled to any appeal of the decision resulting from the hearing as may be provided for under the law, or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, but upon the exhaustion of such remedies and recourse, the consumer and the owner or operator of the pet shop shall comply with the final decision rendered.

     m.   Any owner or operator of a pet shop, or employee thereof, shall be guilty of [a deceptive] an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.), if the owner or operator, or employee thereof, secures or attempts to secure a waiver of any of the provisions of this section except as specifically authorized under subsection g. of this section.

     n.    The owner of a pet shop shall be responsible and liable for any recourse or reimbursement due to a consumer because of violations of any provisions of this section by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or any employee thereof, or because of any document signed pursuant to this section by the owner or operator of the pet shop, or any employee thereof.

     o.    Any pet shop in the State advertising for sale an animal bred by a USDA licensed breeder through print or electronic means, including those posted on the Internet or a website, shall continuously display the name, state of residence, and USDA license number of the breeder of the animal in the advertisement so that this information is easily legible to the consumer.3

(cf:  P.L.2015, c.7, s.2)

 

     5.    Section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1) is amended to read as follows:

     3.    a.  No pet dealer 3[or pet shop]3 shall sell [or offer for sale,] or purchase for resale [whether or not actually offered for sale by the pet shop,] any animal [purchased from any breeder or broker] bred, raised, transferred, or brokered by any person, including the pet dealer if the pet dealer bred or raised the animal, who:

     (1)   is not in compliance with the requirements concerning the maintenance and care of animals and the sanitary operation of kennels, pet shops, shelters 3,3 and pounds established in rules and regulations adopted pursuant to section 14 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.14) [at the time of purchase of the animal by] 5, unless the pet dealer bred or raised the animal, sells the animal directly to the consumer without the use of a broker or other intermediary, and is not required to be licensed by the USDA5 on the date upon which the pet dealer 3[or the pet shop]3 obtains the animal or sells the animal, whichever date is earlier;

     (2)   is not in possession of a current license issued by the USDA pursuant to 9 C.F.R. s.1.1 et seq. 4, unless the pet dealer bred or raised the animal, sells the animal directly to the consumer without the use of a broker or other intermediary, and is not required to be licensed by the USDA4;

     (3)   is not in possession of all other licenses required for a breeder or broker by the state in which the breeder or broker is located;

     (4)   has been cited on 4[a] one or more4  USDA inspection 4[report] reports4  3, issued during the 4[two-year] three-year4  period prior to the date upon which the pet dealer obtains the animal or sells the animal, whichever date is earlier,3 for a 4[direct violation] total of three or more 5[violations4 of] noncompliant items on the inspection reports pursuant to5 the federal "Animal Welfare Act," 7 U.S.C. s.2131 et seq., or the corresponding federal animal welfare regulations at 9 C.F.R. s.1.1 et seq. 3[, issued during the two-year period prior to [the purchase of the animal by] the date upon which the pet dealer or the pet shop obtains the animal or sells the animal, whichever date is earlier]3 ;

     4[(5) has been cited on a USDA inspection report, issued during the two-year period prior to the [purchase of the animal by]  date upon which the pet dealer 3[or the pet shop]3 obtains the animal or sells the animal, whichever date is earlier, for three or more indirect violations of the federal "Animal Welfare Act," 7 U.S.C. s.2131 et seq., or the corresponding federal animal welfare regulations at sections 2.4, 2.40, 2.50 through 2.55, 2.60, 2.75 through 2.80, 2.130 through 2.132, 3.1 through 3.19, or 3.125 through 3.142 of Title 9 of the Code of Federal Regulations;

     (6)   is cited on the two most recent USDA inspection reports, issued prior to the [purchase of the animal by the pet shop] date upon which the pet dealer 3[or the pet shop]3 obtains the animal or sells the animal, whichever date is earlier, for no-access violations pursuant to enforcement of the federal "Animal Welfare Act," 7 U.S.C. s.2131 et seq., or the corresponding federal animal welfare regulations at 9 C.F.R. s.1.1 et seq.]4  5[; or]5

     4[(7)] (5)4 5is required to be licensed by the USDA and is not in compliance with section 10 of P.L.   , c.    (C.     ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill); or

     (6)5 directly or indirectly obtained the animal from a breeder, broker, or other person, firm, corporation, or organization to whom [paragraph] the number and type of violations described in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), 4or4 (4) 4[, (5), or (6)]4 of this subsection [applies] apply.

     3[The provisions of this subsection shall apply only to pet shops licensed and selling cats or dogs in the State before January 12, 2016, 1to new pet shops for which the owner or operator of a pet shop licensed and selling cats or dogs in the State before January 12, 2016  signed, before the date of enactment of P.L.   , c.  (C.      ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), a lease for the new pet shop,1 to pet dealers, and to future owners of certain pet shops as provided for pursuant to subsection b. of section 10 of P.L.     , c.        (C.           ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).  Any such future owner of the pet shop shall retain all records of any violations of this section committed by the previous owner.  Any violations of this section committed by the previous owner or operator of the pet shop shall transfer and attach to any such future owner of the pet shop.]3

     b.    Nothing in this [subsection] section shall be construed as prohibiting or otherwise preventing a pet 3[shop] dealer3 from:

     (1)   purchasing for resale or adoption, selling, or offering for adoption, an animal purchased or otherwise obtained from -

     (a)   a publicly operated animal control facility,

     (b)   an animal rescue organization or pound as defined in [section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1)] section 2 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-93), or

     (c)   a shelter as defined in [section 1 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1) whose primary mission and practice is the placement of abandoned, unwanted, neglected, or abused animals and that is also a tax exempt organization under paragraph (3) of subsection (c) of section 501 of the federal Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. s.501), or any subsequent corresponding sections of the federal Internal Revenue Code, as from time to time amended] section 2 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-93); or

     (2)   transferring adopted animals to or from any entity enumerated in paragraph (1) of this subsection or to or from any pet dealer or pet shop.

     c.     3[Every pet shop shall submit, annually and no later than May 1 of each year, a report to the municipality in which it is located and licensed, providing:

     (1)   the name, full street address, email address, if available, and USDA license number of --

     (a)   any breeder from which the pet shop purchased an animal, whether or not the pet shop offered the animal for sale,

     (b)   any breeder that bred an animal that the pet shop purchased from a broker, whether or not the pet shop offered the animal for sale, and

     (c)   any broker from which the pet shop purchased an animal, whether or not the pet shop offered the animal for sale;

     (2)   if a breeder whose identity the pet shop is required to report pursuant to subparagraph (a) or (b) of paragraph (1) of this subsection is required to be licensed in the state in which the breeder is located, the breeder's state license number;

     (3)   if a broker whose identity the pet shop is required to report pursuant to subparagraph (c) of paragraph (1) of this subsection is different from any breeder whose identity the pet shop is required to report pursuant to subparagraph (a) or (b) of paragraph (1) of this subsection, and the broker is required to be licensed in the state in which the broker is located, the broker's state license number; [and]

     (4)   the total number of animals for each breeder and broker for which the pet shop has reporting requirements pursuant to subparagraphs (a), (b), and (c) of paragraph (1) of this subsection; and

     (5) the USDA inspection reports for each breeder and broker reported pursuant to paragraphs (1) through (3) inclusive of this subsection.Every pet dealer shall maintain a record of each cat or dog bred and raised by the pet dealer and the source of every cat or dog sold by the pet dealer, including the information required pursuant to subsection b. of section 9 of P.L.   , c.   (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).  The pet dealer shall retain the record for at least 5[two] three5 years after the birth or acquisition of the cat or dog, as applicable.  The record shall be:  (1) made available, immediately upon request, to the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety, the Department of Health, or the local health authority; and (2) shall be part of the report submitted annually pursuant to subsection d. of this section.3

     d.    Every pet dealer shall submit annually and no later than May 1 of each year, a report to the Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety providing the following information regarding animals sold to consumers in the State:

     (1) the name, full street address, email address, if available, and USDA license number of the breeder or broker from which the pet dealer obtained or arranged transfer of the animal, and any breeder that bred an animal that the pet dealer purchased from a broker;

     (2) state license numbers of the breeder or broker from which the pet dealer obtained the animal or arranged transfer of the animal, and any breeder that bred an animal that the pet dealer purchased from a broker, if the breeder or broker is required to have a state license;

     (3) 3identification of each cat or dog bred and raised by the pet dealer with the pet dealer’s name and address;

     (4)3 the total number of animals sold to consumers in the State 4and the date of each purchase4 for each breeder and broker for which the pet dealer has reporting requirements pursuant to this subsection; and

     3[(4)] (5)3 the USDA inspection reports for each breeder and broker reported pursuant to paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection.

     3If the pet dealer is a pet shop, the pet shop shall also submit the report required pursuant to this subsection to the municipality in which it is located and licensed.3

     e.     Any pet dealer 3[or pet shop]3 that, after a contested case hearing heard by the Division of Consumer Affairs pursuant to the “Administrative Procedure Act,” P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), is found liable for a third violation of subsection a. of this section, shall be permanently prohibited from selling cats or dogs to any consumer in the State.  If the violator 4[is a pet shop, the pet shop license shall also be revoked pursuant to the license revocation provisions in section 8 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.8).] possesses a license authorizing the violator to sell cats or dogs in the State, the license providing that authority shall also be revoked pursuant to any applicable law4.

(cf:  P.L.2015, c.7, s.3)

 

     6.    Section 4 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.2) is amended to read as follows:

     4.    No provision of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et 3[seq.), P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1 et al.), or P.L.   , c.   (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill)] al.)3 shall be construed to limit or restrict any municipality, county, local health agency, or municipal or county board of health from enacting or enforcing, or interfere with the implementation of, or otherwise invalidate, any law, ordinance, rule, or regulation that places additional obligations on 3[pet dealers or]3 pet shops 3or other pet dealers3 or restrictions on 3[pet dealers or]3 pet shops 3[or pet dealer or pet shop] , other pet dealers, or pet shop or other pet dealer3 sales.

(cf:  P.L.2015, c.7, s.4)

 

     7.    Section 5 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.3) is amended to read as follows:

     5.    [Any] In addition to any other penalties that may be imposed pursuant to P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) for an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) as established in subsection a. of section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95), any person who violates subsection c. of section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95) or section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1), 2any animal rescue organization that violates section 9 of P.L.   , c.   (C.      ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill),2 and any owner or operator 2of a pet shop2 who fails to provide information or provides false information pursuant to the requirements of subsection f. of section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95), shall be subject to a fine of $500 for each violation, to be collected by the division in a civil action by a summary proceeding under the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).

(cf:  P.L.2015, c.7, s.5)

 

     38.  Section 7 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-97) is amended to read as follows:

     7.    a.  The Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety, with the cooperation and assistance of the Department of Health, may adopt, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c. 410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), any rules or regulations as the director deems necessary [for the implementation of this act] to implement and enforce P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.).

     b.    The Division of Consumer Affairs, the Department of Health, or the local health authority may investigate and pursue enforcement against any pet dealer for a violation of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.).3

(cf:  P.L.1999, c.336, s.7)

 

     3[8.]  9.3    (New section)  a.  Notwithstanding the provisions of any rule or regulation adopted pursuant to P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) or any other law, and without limiting the prosecution of any other practices which may be unlawful pursuant to P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) or any other law, it shall be an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) for any pet dealer, or employee thereof, to sell an animal to a consumer in the State without complying with the provisions and requirements of this section, section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1), and any other applicable provisions, requirements, and prohibitions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.).

     b.    Every pet dealer 3, including any pet shop,3 shall maintain records containing the following information:

     (1) The date and place of birth of each animal, and the actual age, or approximate age as established by a veterinarian, of the animal;

     (2) The sex, color markings, and other identifying information of the animal, including any tag, tattoo, collar number, or microchip information;

     (3) The name and address of the veterinarian attending to the animal while the animal is in the custody of the pet dealer, breeder, or broker, and the date of the initial examination of the animal;

     (4) The first and last name of the breeder of the animal, the full street address of where the breeder is doing business, an email address, if available, by which to contact the breeder, the breeder's USDA license number, and, if the breeder is required to be licensed in the state in which the breeder is located, the breeder's state license number;

     (5) If the broker is different from the breeder, the first and last name of the broker of the animal, the full street address of where the broker is doing business, an email address, if available, by which to contact the broker, the USDA license number of the broker, and, if the broker is required to be licensed in the state in which the broker is located, the broker's state license number; and

      (6) The USDA inspection reports for the breeder and the broker of the animal for the 5[two] three5 years prior to the first day that the animal is offered for sale by the pet dealer.

     The information required pursuant to this subsection shall be provided to any interested party upon request, and shall be provided to the consumer at the time of sale.  3Pursuant to subsection c. of section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95), a pet dealer that is a pet shop shall also post the required information.3

 

     510.  (New section)  No breeder or broker who is required to be licensed by the USDA shall sell or transfer any animal to a pet dealer, and no pet dealer shall sell or purchase for resale any animal obtained from a breeder or broker required to be licensed by the USDA, unless the USDA inspection reports for the breeder or broker are available to the public on the USDA website; except, if the USDA website does not allow for public access to those reports, then the breeder or broker shall submit the reports to the Division of Consumer Affairs, which shall post them on its website for public access.5

 

     3[9.] 5[10.3] 11.5  (New section) No animal rescue organization, shelter, or pound may obtain cats or dogs from a breeder or broker for payment or compensation.

 

     3[10.  (New section) a.  Except as provided in subsection b. of this section, no pet shop may offer for sale a cat or dog, or obtain an a cat or dog for the purpose of sale, unless the cat or dog has been obtained from, with or without payment or compensation of any kind, a shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization.

     b.    (1) Subsection a. of this section shall not apply to a pet shop licensed and selling cats or dogs in the State before January 12, 2016.

     (2) A pet shop licensed and selling cats or dogs in the State before January 12, 2016 may (a) expand its current operations from those which existed on the date of enactment of P.L.   , c.     (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill) at its current location as of the date of enactment of P.L.   , c.     (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), 2or move its current location as of the date of enactment of P.L.   , c.     (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill) to another location, provided it ceases operation of the pet shop at its location as of the date of enactment of P.L.   , c.     (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill),2 and (b) assign to a future owner of that pet shop its rights to an exemption under paragraph (1) of this subsection from the prohibition established pursuant to subsection a. of this section to sell cats or dogs at that location.  2If the  pet shop licensed and selling cats or dogs in the State before January 12, 2016 opens or continues to operate any pet shop in addition to the pet shop moved to another location from its location as of the date of enactment of P.L.   , c.     (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill, any such additional pet shop shall be subject to the provisions of subsection a. of this section.

      The assignment of an exemption under paragraph (1) of this subsection pursuant to this paragraph shall also include the right of the future owner to move the location of the pet shop and operate it under the exemption at the new location, provided that the future owner does not continue to operate a pet shop at the location from which it was moved.  If the future owner opens or continues to operate any pet shop in addition to the moved pet shop, any such additional pet shop shall be subject to the provisions of subsection a. of this section.2

     Any such future owner of the pet shop shall retain all records of any violations of section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1) committed by the previous owner or operator of the pet shop and any license suspensions or revocations pursuant to section 8 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.8) issued to that previous owner or operator. Any violation of section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1) committed by the previous owner or operator of the pet shop shall also transfer and attach to any such future owner of the pet shop.

     (3) The provisions of section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1) shall apply only to pet shops licensed and selling cats or dogs before January 12, 2016, to pet dealers, and to a future owner of a pet shop licensed and selling cats or dogs before January 12, 2016 assigned an exemption as permitted pursuant to subparagraph (b) of paragraph (2) of this subsection.]3

 

     3[11.           (New section)  a.  Any pet shop that obtains a cat or dog from a shelter, pound, or animal rescue organization shall maintain a record of the name and address of the shelter, pound, or animal rescue organization from which the cat or dog was obtained.  The pet shop shall retain the record for at least two years after the date of acquisition of the cat or dog.  The record shall be: (1) made available, immediately upon request, to the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety, the Department of Health, or the local health authority; and (2) shall be submitted by the pet shop annually no later than May 1 of each year to the municipality in which the pet shop is located and licensed.  Each pet shop shall display on each cage a label stating the name and address of the shelter, pound, or animal rescue organization of each animal kept in the cage.

     b.    No pet shop may make any cat or dog obtained from a shelter, pound, or animal rescue organization available for experimentation.  An owner or operator of a pet shop who violates this provision shall be guilty of a crime of the fourth degree, in addition to being liable for any penalties that may be assessed pursuant to P.L.    , c.    (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).]3

 

     3[12.] 5[11.3] 12.5 (New section)  a.  No person shall sell, 3[offer for sale,]3 exchange, trade, barter, lease, or display for commercial purposes any cat or dog on any roadside, public right-of-way, parkway, median, park, other recreation area, flea market or other outdoor market, or commercial or retail parking lot regardless of whether access for such purposes is authorized.

     b.    This section shall not apply to the following:

     (1)   The transfer, regardless of payment or compensation, of a cat or dog by, or to, a shelter, pound, or animal rescue organization; or

     (2)   The display of a cat or dog as part of a State or county fair exhibition, 4-H program, or similar exhibition or educational program.

     c.     Any person who violates subsection a. of this section shall be subject to a fine of $500 for each violation, to be collected by the division in a civil action by a summary proceeding under the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).

 

     1[13.  (New section)  a.  The Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety, with the cooperation and assistance of the Department of Health, may adopt, pursuant to the “Administrative Procedure Act,” P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), any rules or regulations that the director deems necessary to implement and enforce P.L.    , c.    (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).

     b.    The Division of Consumer Affairs, the Department of Health, or the local health authority may investigate and pursue enforcement against any pet dealer or pet shop for a violation of P.L.   , c.   (C.   ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).]3

 

     3[14.] 5[12.3] 13.5(New section) The provisions of 2[P.L.    , c.    (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill)] P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.)2 shall not apply to any guide dog or service dog as defined in section 5 of P.L.1945, c.169 (C.10:5-5), search and rescue dog as defined in section 1 of P.L. 1983, c.261 (C.2C:29–3.1), or dog owned or used by a law enforcement agency or used for law enforcement activities.

 

     3[215.] 5[13.3] 14.5 (New section) Except for 3[section 9] sections 5[10 and ]5 113 5and 125 of P.L.    , c.    (C.       ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill) 3[, subsection a. of section 10 of P.L.    , c.    (C.       ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), subsection b. of section 11 of P.L.    , c.    (C.       ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), or section 12 of P.L.   , c.   (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill),]3 5,5 as applicable, the provisions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.) shall not apply to any sale, transfer, exchange, or barter of a cat or dog for purposes related to the conduct of biomedical research by a research facility registered with the United States Department of Agriculture pursuant to the federal “Animal Welfare Act,”  7 U.S.C. s.2131 et seq., or at a facility conducting biomedical research in compliance with the “Public Health Service Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals” issued by the United States National Institutes of Health.2

 

     2[15.] 3[16.2] 5[14.3] 15.5 Section 8 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.8) is amended to read as follows:

     8.    a.  Any person who keeps or operates or proposes to establish [a] an animal rescue organization facility, kennel, a pet shop, a shelter, or a pound shall apply to the clerk or other official designated to license dogs in the municipality where such establishment is located, for a license entitling [him] the applicant to keep or operate such establishment.

     The application shall describe the premises where the establishment is located or is proposed to be located, the purpose or purposes for which it is to be maintained, and shall be accompanied by the written approval of the local municipal and health authorities showing compliance with the local and State rules and regulations governing location of and sanitation at such establishments.

     b.    All licenses issued for [a] an animal rescue organization facility, kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound shall state the purpose for which the establishment is maintained, and all licenses shall expire [on the last day of June of each year] one year after the date that the license was issued, and be subject to revocation by the municipality on recommendation of the Department of Health or the local board of health for failure to comply with the rules and regulations of the [State department] Department of Health or local board governing the same, after the owner has been afforded a hearing by either the [State department] Department of Health or local board, except as provided in subsection c. of this section.

     Any person holding a license shall not be required to secure individual licenses for dogs owned by a licensee and kept at the establishments [; the licenses].  The license for 2[a] an animal rescue organization facility,2 kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound shall not be transferable to another owner or different premises.

     c.     The license for a pet shop shall be subject to review by the municipality, upon recommendation by the Department of Health or the local health authority:

     (1) for failure by the pet shop to comply with the provisions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.),  2or2 the rules and regulations of the [State department] Department of Health or local health authority governing pet shops [or] ;

     (2) if the pet shop meets the criteria for recommended suspension or revocation provided under subsection c. or d. of section 5 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-96), after the owner of the pet shop has been afforded a hearing pursuant to subsection e. of section 5 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-96); or

     (3) for committing an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L. 1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) as established pursuant to section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-95).

     [The] After affording the owner or operator of the pet shop a hearing, the municipality, based on the criteria for the recommendation of the Department of Health or local health authority provided under subsections c. and d. of section 5 of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-96), may suspend the license for 90 days or may revoke the license if it is determined at the hearing that the pet shop: (1) failed to maintain proper hygiene and exercise reasonable care in safeguarding the health of animals in its custody [or]; (2) sold a substantial number of animals that the pet shop knew, or reasonably should have known, to be unfit for purchase ; or (3) committed an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L. 1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1 et seq.) as established pursuant to section 4 of P.L.1999, c.336 (c.56:8-95).

     d.    Renewal of any license issued pursuant to this section shall be at the discretion of the municipality.  The municipality may issue a license for a pet shop that permits the pet shop to sell pet supplies for all types of animals, including cats and dogs, and sell animals other than cats and dogs but restricts the pet shop from selling cats or dogs, or both.

     e.     Every pet shop licensed in the State shall submit annually and no later than May 1 of each year records of the total number of cats and dogs, respectively, sold by the pet shop each year to the municipality in which it is located, and the municipality shall provide this information to the local health authority.

     2f.   (1) The license for an animal rescue organization facility shall be subject to review by the municipality that issued the license, upon recommendation by the Department of Health or the local health authority, if the animal rescue organization that owns and operates the animal rescue organization facility or the animal rescue organization facility:

     (a) fails to comply with the provisions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.) pertaining to animal rescue organizations or animal rescue organization facilities;

     (b) fails to comply with the Department of Health rules and regulations governing animal rescue organizations or animal rescue organization facilities; or

     (c) commits an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1) et seq.

     (2) After affording the animal rescue organization that owns and operates the animal rescue organization facility a hearing, the municipality may suspend the animal rescue organization license for 90 days or may revoke the license if it is determined at the hearing that the animal rescue organization or animal rescue organization facility:   (1) failed to comply with the provisions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.) pertaining to animal rescue organizations or animal rescue organization facilities;

     (2) failed to comply with the Department of Health rules and regulations governing animal rescue organizations or animal rescue organization facilities; or

     (3) committed an unlawful practice and a violation of P.L.1960, c.39 (C.56:8-1) et seq.

     g.    Any animal rescue organization or animal rescue organization facility that is found 3[in] liable for a third3 violation of the provisions of P.L.1999, c.336 (C.56:8-92 et al.) pertaining to animal rescue organizations or animal rescue organization facilities 3[three times]3 shall have its license for any animal rescue organization facility permanently revoked and the animal rescue organization shall be permanently prohibited from operating in the State 3, after a hearing establishing the animal rescue organization or animal rescue organization facility has been found liable for the third violation3 .2

     3h.  Any 4kennel or4 pet shop found liable for a third violation of subsection a. of section 3 of P.L.2015, c.7 (C.56:8-95.1) shall have its license permanently revoked and shall be permanently prohibited from operating in the State, after a hearing establishing 4that4 the 4kennel or4 pet shop has been found liable for the third violation.3

(cf:  P.L.2012, c.17, s.5)

 

     2[16.] 3[17.2] 5[15.3] 16.5 Section 9 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.9) is amended to read as follows:

     9.    The annual license fee for a kennel providing accommodations for [ten] 10 or less dogs shall be [ten dollars ($10.00)] $10 and for more than [ten] 10 dogs [twenty-five  dollars ($25.00)] $25.  The annual license fee for a pet shop shall be [ten dollars  ($10.00)] $10The annual license fee for an animal rescue organization facility shall be $5.  No fee shall be charged for a shelter or pound.

(cf:  P.L.1941, c. 151, s. 9)

 

     3[218.] 5[16.3] 17.5 Section 10 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.10) is amended to read as follows:

     10.  No dog kept in [a] an animal rescue organization facility, kennel, pet shop, shelter, or pound shall be permitted off such premises, except on leash or in a crate or other safe control.2

(cf:  P.L.1941, c.151, s.10)

 

     3[219.] 5[17.3] 18.5 Section 13 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.13) is amended to read as follows:

     13.  The clerk or other official designated to license dogs in the municipality shall forward to the [State] Department of Health a list of all animal rescue organization facilities, kennels, pet shops, shelters, and pounds licensed within thirty days after the licenses therefor are issued, which list shall include the name and address of the licensee and the kind of license issued.2

(cf:  P.L.1941, c.151, s.13)

 

     3[2[17.] 20.2] 5[18.3] 19.5 Section 14 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.14) is amended to read as follows:

     14.  The [State] Department of Health shall, within six months [of the] after approval of [this act] P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.1 et seq.), and with the [co-operation] cooperation and assistance of the [State] Department of Agriculture, prepare and promulgate rules and regulations governing the sanitary conduct and operation of kennels, pet shops, shelters and pounds, to preserve sanitation therein and prevent the spread of rabies and other diseases of dogs within and from such establishments.

     The Department of Health, with the cooperation and assistance of the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety, may adopt rules and regulations necessary to implement the responsibilities of the Department of Health and local boards of health under P.L.    , c.    (C.        ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill), including, but not limited to, rules and regulations governing the sanitary conduct and operation of animal rescue organization facilities.

     [Such] The rules and regulations adopted pursuant to this section shall be enforced by the [State ] Department of Health and [by] local boards of health.

(cf:  P.L.1941, c.151, s.14)

     2[18.] 3[21.2] 5[19.3] 20.5 Section 16 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.16) is amended to read as follows:

     16.  a.  The certified animal control officer appointed by the governing body of the municipality shall take into custody and impound any animal, to thereafter be euthanized, transferred, or offered for adoption, as provided in this section:

     (1)   Any dog off the premises of the owner or of the person charged with the care of the dog, which is reasonably believed to be a stray dog;

     (2)   Any dog off the premises of the owner or the person charged with the care of the dog without a current registration tag on its collar or elsewhere;

     (3)   Any female dog in season off the premises of the owner or the person charged with the care of the dog;

     (4)   Any dog or other animal which is suspected to be rabid; or

     (5)   Any dog or other animal off the premises of the owner or the person charged with its care that is reported to, or observed by, a certified animal control officer to be ill, injured, or creating a threat to public health, safety, or welfare, or otherwise interfering with the enjoyment of property.

     b.    If an animal taken into custody and impounded pursuant to subsection a. of this section has a collar or harness with identification of the name and address of any person, or has a registration tag, or has a microchip with an identification number that can be traced to the owner or person charged with the care of the animal, or the owner or the person charged with the care of the animal is otherwise known, the certified animal control officer shall ascertain the name and address of the owner or the person charged with the care of the animal, and serve to the identified person as soon as practicable, a notice in writing that the animal has been seized and will be liable to be offered for adoption, transferred,  or euthanized if not claimed within seven days after the service of the notice.

     c.     A notice required pursuant to this section may be served:  (1) by delivering it to the person on whom it is to be served, or by leaving it at the person's usual or last known place of residence or the address given on the collar, harness, or microchip identification; or (2) by mailing the notice to that person at the person's usual or last known place of residence, or to the address given on the collar, harness or microchip identification.

     d.    A shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound receiving an animal from a certified animal control officer pursuant to subsection a. of this section, or from any other individual, group, or organization, shall hold the animal for at least seven days before offering it for adoption, or euthanizing, transferring or otherwise relocating, or sterilizing the animal, except if:

     (1)   the animal is surrendered voluntarily by its owner to the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound, in which case the provisions of subsection e. of this section shall apply; or

     (2)   the animal is suspected of being rabid, in which case the provisions of subsection j. of this section shall apply.

     e.     If a shelter, pound or kennel operating as a shelter or pound is not required to hold an animal for at least seven days pursuant to paragraph (1) of subsection d. of this section, the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound:

     (1)   shall offer the animal for adoption for at least seven days before euthanizing 3[it or transferring it to a pet shop] the animal3 ; or

     (2)   may transfer the animal to an animal rescue organization facility or a foster home prior to offering it for adoption if such a transfer is determined to be in the best interest of the animal by the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound.

     f.     Except as otherwise provided for under subsection e. of this section, no shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound receiving an animal from a certified animal control officer may transfer the animal to an animal rescue organization facility 3[, a pet shop,]3 or a foster home until the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound has held the animal for at least seven days.

     g.    If the owner or the person charged with the care of the animal seeks to claim it within seven days, or after the seven days have elapsed but before the animal has been adopted, transferred 3[to a pet shop]3 , or euthanized, the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound:

     (1)   shall, in the case of a cat or dog, release it to the owner or person charged with its care, provided the owner or person charged with the care of the animal provides proof of ownership, which may include a valid cat or dog license, registration, rabies inoculation certificate, or documentation from the owner's veterinarian that the cat or dog has received regular care from that veterinarian;

     (2)   may, in the case of a cat or dog, charge the cost of sterilizing the cat or dog, if the owner requests such sterilizing when claiming it; and

     (3)   may require the owner or person charged with the care of the animal to pay all the animal's expenses while in the care of the shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound, not to exceed $4 per day.

     h.    If the animal remains unclaimed, is not claimed due to the failure of the owner or other person to comply with the requirements of this section, or is not adopted after seven days after the date on which notice is served pursuant to subsection c. of this section or, if no notice can be served, not less than seven days after the date on which the animal was impounded, the impounded animal may be placed in a foster home, transferred to another shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, [or] 3or3 animal rescue organization facility, 3[or pet shop,]3 or euthanized in a manner causing as little pain as possible and consistent with the provisions of R.S.4:22-19.

     i.     At the time of adoption, the right of ownership in the animal shall transfer to the new owner.  No dog or other animal taken into custody, impounded, sent or otherwise brought to a shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound , or transferred to 3[a pet shop from a shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound] an animal rescue organization facility3, shall be sold or otherwise be made available for the purpose of experimentation.  Any person who sells or otherwise makes available any such dog or other animal for the purpose of experimentation shall be guilty of a crime of the fourth degree.

     j.     Any animal seized under this section suspected of being rabid shall be immediately reported to the executive officer of the local board of health and to the Department of Health, and shall be quarantined, observed, and otherwise handled and dealt with as appropriate for an animal suspected of being rabid or as required by the Department of Health for the animals.

     k.    When a certified animal control officer takes into custody and impounds, or causes to be taken into custody and impounded, an animal, the certified animal control officer may place the animal in the custody of, or cause the animal to be placed in the custody of, only a licensed shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound.  The certified animal control officer may not place the animal in the custody of, or cause the animal to be placed in the custody of, any animal rescue organization facility, foster home, or other unlicensed facility.  However, the licensed shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound may place the animal in an animal rescue organization facility, a foster home, or other unlicensed facility if necessary pursuant to subsection e. or h. of this section.

     l.     Notwithstanding the provisions of this section and sections 3 and 4 of P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.30 and C.4:19-15.31) to the contrary, no cat or dog being transferred between shelters, pounds, or kennels operating as shelters or pounds, or being transferred to 3[a pet shop or]3 an animal rescue organization facility, or placed in a foster home, shall be required to be sterilized prior to that transfer.

(cf:  P.L.2012, c.17, s.7)

 

     3[2[19.] 22.2 Section 5 of P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.32) is amended to read as follows:

     5.  a.  When a cat or dog is put in the custody of and impounded with a shelter, pound, or kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or an animal rescue organization facility receives a cat or dog, the shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility shall, if the identity of the owner is not known, scan the animal for microchip identification, provided the shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility has such technology available.

     b.    Prior to release of any cat or dog for adoption, transfer to a pet shop, another facility or foster home, or euthanasia of the cat or dog, the shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility shall, if the identity of the owner is not known, scan the cat or dog for microchip identification, provided the shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility has such technology available.

     c.     If either scan required pursuant to subsection a. or b. of this section reveals information concerning the owner of the cat or dog, the shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility shall immediately seek to contact and notify the owner of the whereabouts of the cat or dog.  Furthermore, if microchip identification is found, the shelter, pound, kennel operating as a shelter or pound, or animal rescue organization facility shall hold the animal for at least seven days after the notification to the owner.

(cf:  P.L.2011, c.142, s.5)]3

 

     2[20.] 3[23.2] 5[20.3] 21.5 Section 6 of P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.33) is amended to read as follows:

     6.  a.  The Department of Health shall establish a registry of animal rescue organizations and their facilities in the State.  [Any animal rescue organization may voluntarily participate in the registry].

     b.    The department, pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), may adopt any rules and regulations determined necessary to implement the [voluntary] registry and coordinate its use with the provisions of P.L.2011, c.142 (C.4:19-15.30 et al.), section 383 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.8), and section 16 of P.L.1941, c.151 (C.4:19-15.16).

(cf:  P.L.2012, c.17, s.13)

 

     3[2[21.] 24.2] 5[ 21.3] 22.5 This act shall take effect on the 180th day following the date of enactment.