Thank you for contacting me to express your support for a law that would create harsher penalties for animal abusers. I am aware of Grace’s story, and as a dog owner myself, I am sickened. I had the opportunity to meet with members of the Syracuse Pit Crew, and indicated that I would be supportive of changing the law to increase penalties against anyone who neglects or abuses a companion animal.
I am pleased to report that legislation has already been introduced (S.6730/A.9917) that would accomplish our common goal— allowing individuals charged with neglect, including failure to provide medical care, to be charged with a felony under the penal law. I have signed on as a co-sponsor of this legislation.
I will join you in advocating for passage of this legislation in the upcoming 2013 legislative session which will begin in January. Again, thank you for bringing attention to this important issue, and feel free to contact my office if you have any questions.
David J. Valesky