Denver Voters Overwhelmingly Pass Ballot Measure to Lift City's 30-Year-Old Pit Bull Ban

Georgia Slater
·2 min read

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Pit bulls are wagging their tails in Denver after voters approved a measure Tuesday to lift the city's 30-year-ban on the breed.

The ballot measure overwhelmingly passed with 64.5 percent voting to repeal the long-standing ban on the dogs, according to The Denver Post.

The approved legislation now requires pit bull owners to get a restricted license for their pets and to have their dogs microchipped.

The bill also orders pit bill owners — who are limited to two pit bulls per home — to pay a higher fee than is set for other breeds, to maintain appropriate paperwork for their dog, and to have no issues with the pit bull for three years.

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Councilman Chris Herndon led the effort to repeal the ban after Mayor Michael Hancock vetoed an initial attempt earlier this year.

Hancock said he could not support the legislation because it did not "fully addresses the very real risk to severe injury that can result from attacks from these particular dog breeds, especially should they happen to a child," local station KMGH reported.

According to the Post, Herdon argued that breed-specific legislation is ineffective and often targets communities of color.

He explained that as many Denver residents already own pit bulls, this measure would help city officials be able to track and regulate the dogs.

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According to KMGH, the ban was first put in place in 1989 after 20 people had been attacked by pit bulls the previous five years.

Included in the count was a 3-year-old who died from an attack in 1986.

Other cities in Colorado still have bans on pit bulls including Aurora, Lone Tree, Louisville and Commerce City.

In 2018, Castle Rock lifted their ban on the breed.