So, More About Pit Bulls
On the floor of council today, Cecil Thomas' proposal to change the city's pit bull ordinance failed to get an immediate hearing. It takes six votes to do that; he had five.
He thought he had six, though, Thomas said later. He thought Jeff Berding would be that sixth. But Berding said he voted against it because he'd tried before the meeting to get Thomas to take out the part about training police officers to identify pit bulls, pass that and then send the rest of his proposed changes back through committee for more discussion. When Thomas declined to do that, Berding said, he declined to vote to hear the measure.
Also voting against immediate consideration: Chris Bortz, Roxanne Qualls and Laketa Cole.
Thomas said he'll introduce the ordinance at the Law and Public Safety Committee, which he leads, next week. It's a reworked version of his original and no longer includes a mandate that SPCA Cincinnati take custody of pit bulls. SPCA CEO Harold Dates objected to that. The SPCA deputies still will pick up the dogs, but only after Cincinnati police call them to do so.
Oh, and this might be the best part of the whole thing - with all this fuss over what should be done with pit bulls, the city's contract with the SPCA expired in January 2007. The private, non-profit agency's still picking up and caring for pit bulls pending city prosecutions under the terms of the expired contract, which says the city will pay up to $100,000 a year to house the pit bulls waiting for their owners' court cases.