Pima County can't adopt pet store law

2014-03-29T00:00:00Z Pima County can't adopt pet store lawBy Darren DaRonco Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Pima County won’t follow Tucson in passing a pet store ordinance.

Earlier this month, the City Council directed the City Attorney’s Office to draft a measure requiring pet stores within city limits to sell only dogs from shelters or nonprofit rescue groups. A final vote on the ordinance will be held at a future council meeting.

But unlike the city, state law prohibits the county from dictating similar constraints on store owners.

An opinion from the Pima County Attorney’s Office determined nothing exists either in the state constitution or through a legislative act that could be used to justify interfering in where pet stores should acquire their inventory from.

And if the Board of Supervisors did pass an ordinance, it would be “invalid and unenforceable.”

Since Tucson is a charter city, it has more leeway in which laws it can adopt.

The county, however, can intervene and impound a dog if evidence exists that a pet store or breeder is mistreating an animal.

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