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Towns now handle dog licenses, tags

TRI-COUNTY AREA—As of the start of this year, town offices in New York state are responsible for selling dog tags and licenses.

New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets was the agency previously behind providing tags and licenses. This meant that town boards had to pass a local law taking over the licensing responsibilities. In some cases this means slight differences from town to town.

Starkey Town Clerk Sue Crans said dog licensing fees would increase $1. She said the only other change people will notice is what the tags say. She explained Starkey residents will get town of Starkey dog tags. 

Clerk Joy Perry said Barrington sent the town’s proposed local law to the lawyer before it was approved. She said fees would be added in later by resolution. Perry added the Yates sheriff department suggested a fee, but the board will discuss it more before making a final decision.

Town clerks in Schuyler County decided to get together and make sure all the towns have the same laws and so there was uniformity. 

Hector town Clerk Jane Ike said the clerks met last year starting in July. She explained there has been a leash law in effect since 1988 that was incorporated into the local law the towns passed.

Ike explained that with the state not in the equation, the county and towns will get more of the money from license and tag fees. She said the county gets some of the money because the towns are entered into a contract with the sheriff’s department for the animal shelter.

“Even though we processed (the paperwork), most money went to the state or the county,” she said about when the state was involved.

Section 5.7 of the new law exempts the following dogs from the licensing requirement: guide dogs, hearing or other service dogs, war dogs, working search dogs or detection dogs as well as police work dogs and dogs used for pet therapy.

Section 6 of the law sets out prohibited acts, punishable by seizure and impoundment of the offending dog and redemption fees for the owner. A dog may not run at large; “...engage in habitual barking... or conduct itself in a such a manner so as to unreasonably and habitually annoy and/or disturb any person other than the owner of such dog.”

The operational language of the new law will be identical in each of the eight towns in Schuyler County if the cooperatively drafted law is adopted in all of the towns.




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