Agreement deters Ohio livestock care initiative from ballot
COLUMBUS, Ohio: The Ohio petition drive deadline has passed and contrary to previous reports supporters of the proposed Ohio Livestock Care Initiative did not file signatures. On the last day to submit signatures it was announced that Gov. Ted Strickland, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and Ohio agricultural leaders reached an agreement. Specifically, the Humane Society agreed to drop their ballot efforts and the state agreed to a number of livestock issues and regulations. Agreed issues included phasing out gestation crates used by the pork industry over the next 15 years and regulations on dog breeding kennels, cockfighting and exotic animals.
Originally the proposed initiative proposed requiring that the newly created Livestock Care Standards Board adopt certain minimum standards. If the measure had been approved by voters the board would have had six years to implement the new guidelines. Such proposed standards included prohibiting farm owners from "confining any [calves] raised for veal, pigs during pregnancy, or egg-laying hens for all or the majority of a day, in a manner that prevents such animal from lying down, standing up, fully extending his or her limbs, or turning around freely."
To qualify the proposed initiative for the November 2010 ballot, supporters were required to collect a minimum of 402,275 valid signatures across at least 44 of 88 counties. According to late June reports supporters had exceeded 400,000 signatures. However, in light of the last minute agreement, no signatures were filed.
- Business First of Columbus, "Livestock issue not going to ballot," June 30, 2010
- Cincinnati.com, "Animal rights measure off ballot," June 30, 2010
- The Columbus Dispatch, "Deal on animal care means no fall ballot issue," June 30, 2010
- Ohio Attorney General, "Ohio Livestock Care Initiative full text," accessed February 2, 2010