Libby City Council adopts revised definition of ‘vicious dog’ in city’s municipal code

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The Libby City Council on Feb. 5 voted 5-0 to adopt Ordinance 1912, which revises the definition of “vicious dog” in Chapter 7.04.020 of the city’s municipal code.

The decision followed the City Council’s related move on Jan. 15 to lift the city’s so-called “pit bull ban.

With the adoption of the ordinance, the City Council wrapped up a months-long effort that Council member Gary Armstrong has said was “a pretty good example of government and the public working together as partners, and not, as sometimes happens, as adversaries.”

The City Council’s resolution and ordinance committee began work on the issue after an Aug. 3 meeting to discuss the overhaul of the cemetery ordinance was overtaken by public discussion on the pit-bull prohibition, an agenda item intended for discussion at a later date.

In the ensuing months, committee members Kristin Smith, Peggy Williams and Brian Zimmerman worked closely with Libby Police Chief Scott Kessel and Corey Cromer, Wendy Anderson and Kathi Hooper of animal control.

Committee meetings were frequently attended by opponents of the pit-bull ban.

The definition of a vicious dog that the committee settled on and the ordinance sets is “A dog which harasses, chases, bites or attempts to bite any human being without provocation or which harasses, bites or attempts to bite any other animal. The term animal includes all livestock and any domestic pet.”

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