Wausau leaders push to pass "Mary's Law" - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Wausau leaders push to pass "Mary's Law"


Wausau city officials met Monday night to speed up the process of creating a new law to prevent animal abuse. It's a story that's attracted national attention, and one we've followed from the beginning.

It comes after police say a Wausau woman poisoned and tortured her boyfriend's dog Mary, back in June. Wausau city officials say they're one step closer to passing what they call "Mary's Law."

Advocates of stronger animal control in Wausau say this day has been a long time coming.

"Everybody got to hear the proposal for the first time and now they need to digest it a little bit and take it back to their committees but we are on track to get this done by the end of the year," said Keene Winters, subcommittee on animal control.

Three city committees met at Wausau City Hall to try and speed up the process of approving "Mary's Law." The law is named after a dog police say was tortured and poisoned by 20-year-old Sean Janas of Wausau, earlier this year. The story provoked a strong response.

"We see this as a proactive community approach all the way this is not the doggy police this is humane officers looking to be proactive in the communities having a rapport with the communities," said Wausau resident Becky Mcelhaney.

City leaders say that solution needs to come before the start of the New Year.
Which is why this rare meeting took place, to try and give a push to passing Mary's Law.
That law would raise pet licensing fees to help pay for three animal control workers in the Wausau area.

"This will all be from license fees so we think animal sheltering animal control staff should really just be paid for by licensing fees essentially user fees for the system and none of it will come from the general levy," said Winters.

Right now it calls for licensing fees of $10 for spayed and neutered pets, and $20 for those that aren't.  But the law is still being worked on.

Wausau council members hope to send Mary's Law to the full city council before the end of the year.

City committees met for almost three hours tonight to discuss the law.

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