MASON CITY, Iowa - The Humane Society of North Iowa and a representative from the Humane Society of the United States held a town hall-style meeting to discuss animal welfare in Iowa. Concerned citizens gathered at Fat Hill Brewery in downtown Mason City to hear about the status of an animal welfare bill.
Bill HF737 unanimously passed the Iowa House earlier this year but has been stuck in committees in the Senate. The bill makes animal torture an automatic Felony and has tougher penalties for repeat offenders. It also would provide mental health assessments for people who are animal hoarders.
According to Preston Moore, the Iowa state director of the Humane Society of the United States, "Iowa is the only state in the top 10 USDA agriculture producing states that doesn't prosecute animal torture as an automatic felony. "
He also mentioned several other states, like California and Minnesota that have similar laws and are top ag producers in the country.
Moore, along with Sybil Soukup, the executive director of the Humane Society of North Iowa, urged people at the meeting to not just share their thoughts with friends on Facebook but to reach out to lawmakers as much as possible to get them to pass this bill.