Pasco and Kennewick
Pasco and Kennewick have declared pit bulls potentially dangerous animals --
a status that requires their owners to carry expensive insurance and follow
strict guidelines for restraining the animals.
Richland, meanwhile, is considering a similar law.
But Pasco for the past 1 1/2 years has allowed pit bull owners to demonstrate
their pets' merit through a behavioral test.
Dogs that pass are released from the "potentially dangerous" distinction.
The dog can be reclassified as potentially dangerous later if
it ever commits certain threatening acts outlined in municipal code.
In Pasco, the permit costs $250, and the owners must secure insurance or
a bond for $250,000. The permit has to be renewed annually, whereas the
test is good for two years.
In Kennewick, where potentially dangerous animal permits are available for $25,
the good-citizen test isn't an option for pit bull owners.
City Manager Bob Hammond said the ordinance has been on the books since the
1980s, and the test option has never come up.
Richland, however, is in the process of moving toward Pasco's position on pit
bulls. The city council on Tuesday (12-19-2006)will consider the second reading
ordinance that would classify pit bulls as potentially dangerous. It would
require their owners to pay $250 and get the insurance if their dogs couldn't
pass the good-citizen test.