SENATE DOCKET, NO. 1735        FILED ON: 1/16/2015

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 878


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



Mark C. Montigny


To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
Court assembled:

The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act to protect health and safety of animals in vehicles.






Mark C. Montigny

Second Bristol and Plymouth

Jason M. Lewis

Fifth Middlesex

Michael O. Moore

Second Worcester

James B. Eldridge

Middlesex and Worcester

William N. Brownsberger

Second Suffolk and Middlesex

Barbara A. L'Italien

Second Essex and Middlesex

Joan B.  Lovely

Second Essex

Susan Williams Gifford

2nd Plymouth

Paul Tucker

7th Essex

Michelle M. DuBois

10th Plymouth

Angelo J. Puppolo, Jr.

12th Hampden

Angelo L. D'Emilia

8th Plymouth

Cory Atkins

14th Middlesex

Thomas M. Stanley

9th Middlesex

Timothy R. Madden

Barnstable, Dukes and Nantucket

Sean Garballey

23rd Middlesex

Bruce E. Tarr

First Essex and Middlesex

Brian A. Joyce

Norfolk, Bristol and Plymouth

Richard J. Ross

Norfolk, Bristol and Middlesex

Walter F. Timilty

7th Norfolk

Kathleen O'Connor Ives

First Essex

Marc R. Pacheco

First Plymouth and Bristol

Antonio F. D. Cabral

13th Bristol

Sal N. DiDomenico

Middlesex and Suffolk

James Arciero

2nd Middlesex

Jennifer E. Benson

37th Middlesex

Robert L. Hedlund

Plymouth and Norfolk

Timothy J. Toomey, Jr.

26th Middlesex

SENATE DOCKET, NO. 1735        FILED ON: 1/16/2015

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 878

By Mr. Montigny, a petition (accompanied by bill, Senate, No. 878) of Mark C. Montigny, Jason M. Lewis, Michael O. Moore, James B. Eldridge and other members of the General Court for legislation to protect health and safety of animals in vehicles.  The Judiciary.


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the One Hundred and Eighty-Ninth General Court



An Act to protect health and safety of animals in vehicles.


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

(a) No owner or person shall confine an animal in a motor vehicle in a manner that could reasonably be expected to threaten the health of the animal due to exposure to extreme heat or cold.

(b) In order to protect the health and safety of an animal, an animal control officer, law enforcement officer or fire fighter who has probable cause to believe that this section is being violated shall have the authority to enter such motor vehicle by any means necessary under the circumstances, after making a reasonable effort under the circumstances to locate the owner or other responsible person. A law enforcement officer or animal control officer may enter the motor vehicle for the sole purpose of release of the animal and may not search the vehicle unless otherwise permitted by law.

(c) An animal control officer, law enforcement or fire fighter who removes an animal in accordance with this section shall, in a secure and conspicuous location on or within the motor vehicle, leave written notice bearing the officer's or agent's name and office, and the address of the location where the animal may be retrieved. The owner may retrieve the animal only after payment of all charges that have accrued for the maintenance, care, medical treatment, and impoundment of the animal.

(d) A law enforcement or animal control officer who removes an animal from a motor vehicle pursuant to this section is immune from criminal or civil liability that might otherwise result from the removal.

(e)  A law enforcement or animal control officer may seek a complaint against the owner or keeper of an animal who is found to have violated the provisions of this section. This section shall be subject to enforcement under the provisions of section 21D of Chapter 40.

1. The penalty for the first violation shall be $75;

2. The penalty for the second violation shall be $100 dollars;

3. The penalty for the third and each subsequent violation shall be $300.

(f) Nothing in this section shall preclude prosecution for a violation of section 77 of Chapter 272 of the Massachusetts General Laws.