S.B. 128: Pets for Vets Act of 2020
Sponsors: Republican Sens. Bryan W. Simonaire and Edward R. Reilly (Anne Arundel County); Jack Bailey (Calvert and St. Mary’s counties); George C. Edwards (Garrett, Allegany and Washington counties); Jason C. Gallion (Harford and Cecil counties); Stephen S. Hershey, Jr. (Kent, Queen Anne’s, Cecil and Caroline counties); Johnny Ray Salling (Baltimore County); and Mary Beth Carozza (Somerset, Worcester and Wicomico counties). Democratic Sens. Pamela Beidle (Anne Arundel County); Douglas J. J. Peters (Prince George’s County); Ronald N. Young (Frederick County); Clarence K. Lam (Baltimore and Howard counties); and Arthur Ellis (Charles County).
Synopsis: Requires a county or municipal animal control facility to waive a dog or cat adoption fee for a veteran who presents qualifying identification.
Analysis: Pets, and the bonds we develop with them, have been proven to lift spirits, provide focus and purpose, and — specific to veterans — ease the transition back into civilian life. For vets who need a furry friend, waiving the adoption fee, which can run as high as $150, for an animal who needs a home is the least we can do to repay them for their service to our country. Such action is expected to have minimal impact on local government revenue, but possibly make a huge difference in the lives of some veterans and creatures.
Editorial board recommendation: Pass.