Niagara County along with Cattaraugus County in Western New York along with seven other counties in the state, plus New York City that have an animal abuser registry.  Niagara County plans to make their version even tougher.

In Niagara County, anyone convicted of even a misdemeanor animal abuse charge is added to the registry.  It means that person is banned from buying or possessing any animal for 15 years.  It also prohibits any animal shelter or pet seller from having any dealings with them.

Niagara County is proposing to fix what's considered a loop-hole in the law.  Persons charged with animal cruelty, but who take a plea to a reduce charge are able to avoid being placed on the registry.  Under a new proposal, the judge in any such case can decide to place the person on the registry anyway.

Niagara County District Attorney Caroline Wojtaszek authored the amendment to the animal abuser registry law and the Niagara County Legislature will consider the amendment next month.

Erie County has twice considered the creation of an animal abuser registry but the legislature never approved it.

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