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District of Columbia (D.C.)

District of Columbia Official Code 2001 Edition. Division I. Government of District. Title 8. Environmental and Animal Control and Protection. Subtitle E. Animal Control and Protection. Chapter 20A. Pet Ownership Restriction in Assisted Housing. Title 7. Human Health Care and Safety. Subtitle B-I. Blind and Physically Disabled Persons. Chapter 10. Rights of Blind and Physically Disabled Persons.

Statute Details
Printable Version
Citation: DC Code 8-2031 - 8-2035; DC CODE 7-1002, 1009; DC CODE 8-1804

Citation: DC ST 8-2031 - 8-2035; DC ST 7-1002, 1009; DC ST 8-1804


Last Checked by Web Center Staff: 11/2013

Summary:   The owner or operator of locally assisted housing accommodations for elderly or disabled people in D.C. may not prevent a tenant from owning or keeping common household pets. The owner may not discriminate against any person in connection with admission to, or continued occupancy of, a rental unit due to owning such pets. However, an owner or operator may require the removal of pets whose conduct or condition constitutes a threat or nuisance to the health or safety of the other occupants. A violation is a civil infraction that may result in a fine of up to $300.


Statute in Full:

District of Columbia Official Code 2001 Edition. Division I. Government of District. Title 7. Human Health Care and Safety. Subtitle B-I. Blind and Physically Disabled Persons. Chapter 10. Rights of Blind and Physically Disabled Persons.

§ 7-1002. Equal access to public accommodations and conveyances.

§ 7-1009. Definitions.

District of Columbia Official Code 2001 Edition. Division I. Government of District. Title 8. Environmental and Animal Control and Protection. Subtitle E. Animal Control and Protection. Chapter 18. Animal Control. Subchapter I. General.

§ 8-1804. Licenses and fees.

District of Columbia Official Code 2001 Edition. Division I. Government of District. Title 8. Environmental and Animal Control and Protection. Subtitle E. Animal Control and Protection. Chapter 20A. Pet Ownership Restriction in Assisted Housing

§ 8-2031. Definitions.

§ 8-2032. Pet ownership policy established.

§ 8-2033. Exception.

§ 8-2034. Civil infractions.

§ 8-2035. Rules.

 

 

District of Columbia Official Code 2001 Edition. Division I. Government of District. Title 7. Human Health Care and Safety. Subtitle B-I. Blind and Physically Disabled Persons. Chapter 10. Rights of Blind and Physically Disabled Persons.

 

§ 7-1002. Equal access to public accommodations and conveyances.

(a) Persons with physical or mental disabilities are entitled to full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, and privileges of all common carriers, airplanes, motor vehicles, railroad trains, motor buses, streetcars, boats, or any other public conveyances or modes of transportation in the District of Columbia, hotels, lodging places, places of public accommodation, amusement, or resort, and other places to which the general public is invited in the District of Columbia, subject only to the conditions and limitations established by law or in accordance with law applicable alike to all persons.

(b) Persons with physical or mental disabilities shall have the right to be accompanied by a service animal in any of the places, accommodations, or conveyances listed in subsection (a) of this section without being denied access because of the service animal. Such persons shall not be required to pay an extra charge for the service animal but shall be liable for any damage done to the premises or facilities by the service animal.

(c) Every service animal trainer who is training an animal to be a service animal shall have the same access and liability conferred upon a person with physical or mental disabilities pursuant to subsection (b) of this section when accompanied by a service animal in training.

(d) In making a determination that an individual qualifies under this section, a public accommodation or conveyance may make a reasonable inquiry as to an individual's need for a service animal but shall limit such inquiry to the following:

(1) Whether the animal is required because of the individual's disability;

(2) The function or purpose of the animal, including the task or work the animal has been trained to perform;

(3) Whether the animal meets the definition of a service animal provided in § 7-1009(5); and

(4) Whether the animal is housebroken.

Credits

(Oct. 21, 1972, 86 Stat. 971, Pub. L. 92-515, § 2; Mar. 5, 1981, D.C. Law 3-144, § 2(a), 27 DCR 4659; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 25(b), 53 DCR 6198; May 22, 2010, D.C. Law 18-146, § 2(a), 57 DCR 2549; Apr. 27, 2013, D.C. Law 19-291, § 2(b), 60 DCR 2351.)

 

 

§ 7-1009. Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter:

(1) The term “blind person” means, and the term “blind” refers to, a person who is totally blind, has impaired vision of not more than 20/200 visual acuity in the better eye and for whom vision cannot be improved to better than 20/200, or who has loss of vision due wholly or in part to impairment of field vision or to other factors which affect the usefulness of vision to a like degree.

(2) The term “deaf person” means a person who is totally deaf or a person with hearing impairment that severely interferes with his or her ability to hear environmental noises.

(3) The term “guide dog” means a dog that is specially trained to assist a blind or deaf person and one which a blind or deaf person relies on for assistance.

(4) The term “persons with physical or mental disabilities” refers to an individual who has a medically determinable physical or mental impairment that substantially limits the ability of one to assist one's self, to perform manual tasks, to engage in an occupation, to live independently, to walk, to see, or to hear.

(5) The term “service animal” means an animal, permitted in the District under § 8-1808(h)(1), including a guide dog, that is specially trained to assist a person who meets the definition of persons with physical or mental disabilities, and is one which a person with physical or mental disabilities relies on for disability-related assistance. The term also includes an animal in training by an organization that provides service animals to persons with physical or mental disabilities. The term does not encompass an animal whose sole purpose is to serve as a crime deterrent or that serves solely as a companion.

(6) The term “service animal in training” means an animal that is:

(A) At least 6 months of age;

(B) Undergoing special training to assist persons with physical or mental disabilities;

(C) Accompanied by an experienced service animal trainer; and

(D) Designated as a service animal in training by wearing a harness, backpack, or vest that identifies it as a service animal in training.

Credits

(Oct. 21, 1972, 86 Stat. 972, Pub. L. 92-515, § 8; Mar. 5, 1981, D.C. Law 3-144, § 2(d), 27 DCR 4659; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 25(g), 53 DCR 6198; May 22, 2010, D.C. Law 18-146, § 2(c), 57 DCR 2549; Apr. 27, 2013, D.C. Law 19-291, § 2(d), 60 DCR 2351.)

 

 

District of Columbia Official Code 2001 Edition. Division I. Government of District. Title 8. Environmental and Animal Control and Protection. Subtitle E. Animal Control and Protection. Chapter 18. Animal Control. Subchapter I. General.

§ 8-1804. Licenses and fees.

(a) For purposes of this section, “owner” shall not include:

(1) A licensed veterinary hospital;

(2) A licensed pet shop; and

(3) An incorporated animal welfare agency not engaged in the sale of animals.

(b) An owner who has a dog over the age of 4 months shall before July 1st of each year, or within 10 days of acquiring the dog, or within 10 days after the dog becomes 4 months of age, obtain an annual license. An owner shall ensure that his dog wears a collar and a license.

(c) Before any annual license may be issued, the owner of the dog shall have the dog vaccinated against rabies and distemper, and shall pay any outstanding fines.

(d) Repealed.

(e) The annual license fees for dogs is as follows:

(1) No fee for a dog trained as a service animal and actually used for the purpose of assisting a person with a physical or sensory impairment, such as a vision or hearing impairment;

(2) $15 for a male or female dog certified by a licensed veterinarian as neutered or spayed or certified as incapable of enduring spaying or neutering; and

“(3) $50 for all other dogs.”.

(e-1) All the fees collected pursuant to subsection (e) of this section shall be deposited in the General Fund of the District of Columbia.

(f) The Mayor may periodically revise the schedule of fees by rulemaking.

(g) No license may be transferred from 1 dog to another.

(h) Any license issued pursuant to this section may be issued by the Department of Health or by a veterinarian licensed in the District of Columbia pursuant to § 3-512.02. A veterinarian may collect an additional $2 for each license issued as reimbursement for administrative costs.

(i) Repealed.

(j)(1) There is established as a nonlapsing fund the Sterilization Fund (“Fund”), which shall be used solely for the purposes set forth in this subsection.

(2) Deposits into the Fund shall include:

(A) Two dollars from each fee paid for the application, issuance, or renewal of a dog license;

(B) Funds authorized by an act of Congress, a reprogramming, or an intra-District transfer to be deposited into the Fund;

(C) Any other monies designated by law or regulation to be deposited into the Fund;

(D) Interest on money deposited in the Fund.

(3) All funds deposited into the Fund, and any interest earned on those funds, shall not revert to the unrestricted fund balance of the General Fund of the District of Columbia at the end of a fiscal year, or at any other time, but shall be continually available for the uses and purposes set forth in subsection (d) of this section without regard to fiscal year limitation, subject to authorization by Congress.

(4)(A) Monies in the Fund shall be used to subsidize sterilization of cats and dogs owned by persons within the District of Columbia.

(B) The Mayor may issue grants to appropriate animal welfare organizations that are experienced in subsidized sterilization efforts.

Credits

(Oct. 18, 1979, D.C. Law 3-30, § 5, 26 DCR 765; Mar. 17, 1993, D.C. Law 9-236, § 2(a), 40 DCR 614; Sept. 26, 1995, D.C. Law 11-52, § 101, 42 DCR 3684; Apr. 20, 1999, D.C. Law 12-261, § 2004, 46 DCR 3142; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 30, 53 DCR 6198; Dec. 5, 2008, D.C. Law 17-281, § 104(c), 55 DCR 9186; Sept. 14, 2011, D.C. Law 19-21, § 9073, 58 DCR 6226; Sept. 20, 2012, D.C. Law 19-168, § 8005, 59 DCR 8025; Sept. 26, 2012, D.C. Law 19-171, § 64, 59 DCR 6190.)

 

 

District of Columbia Official Code 2001 Edition. Division I. Government of District. Title 8. Environmental and Animal Control and Protection. Subtitle E. Animal Control and Protection. Chapter 20A. Pet Ownership Restriction in Assisted Housing

§ 8-2031. Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) “District” means the District of Columbia.

(2) “Elderly” means any person who is 60 years of age or older.

(3) “Person with a disability” means any person who has a medically determined physical impairment, including blindness, which prohibits and incapacitates 75% of that person's ability to move about, to assist himself or herself, or to engage in an occupation.

(4) “Locally assisted housing accommodation for elderly persons or persons with disabilities” means any building that contains 4 or more rental units, receives District housing assistance, and is designated for elderly tenants or tenants with disabilities. The term “locally assisted housing accommodation for elderly persons or persons with disabilities” shall not include facilities receiving other types of District assistance and licensed under § 44-501 et seq.

(5) “Common household pet” means a domesticated animal, such as a dog, cat, bird, rodent, fish, or turtle, that is traditionally kept in the home for pleasure rather than for commercial purposes. The term “common household pet” shall not include reptiles, other than turtles.

CREDIT(S)

(Mar. 16, 1989, D.C. Law 7-181, § 2, 35 DCR 7715; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 31(a), 53 DCR 6198.)


§ 8-2032. Pet ownership policy established.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the owner or operator of locally assisted housing accommodations for elderly persons or persons with disabilities shall not:

(1) As a condition of tenancy or otherwise, prohibit or prevent an elderly tenant or tenant with a disability from owning common household pets or keeping common household pets in the rental unit of the tenant; or

(2) Discriminate against any person in connection with admission to, or continued occupancy of, that rental unit by reason of the ownership of common household pets by that person or the presence of common household pets in the rental unit of that person.

CREDIT(S)

(Mar. 16, 1989, D.C. Law 7-181, § 3, 35 DCR 7715; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 31(b), 53 DCR 6198.)


§ 8-2033. Exception.

(a) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prohibit any owner or operator of a locally assisted housing accommodation for elderly persons or persons with disabilities or any local housing authority from requiring the removal from any rental unit any common household pet whose conduct or condition is duly determined to constitute a threat or nuisance to the health or safety of the other occupants of the housing accommodation. The owner or operator of a locally assisted housing accommodation shall regulate pet ownership in accordance with rules established pursuant to § 8-2035.

(b) No pet shall be kept in violation of health statutes or under circumstances constituting cruelty to animals as set forth in § 22-1001.

CREDIT(S)

(Mar. 16, 1989, D.C. Law 7-181, § 4, 35 DCR 7715; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 31(c), 53 DCR 6198.)


§ 8-2034. Civil infractions.

Any person who violates the provisions of this chapter shall be fined not more than $300 for each violation. A violation of this chapter shall be a civil infraction for purposes of Chapter 18 of Title 2. Civil fines, penalties, and fees may be imposed as sanctions for any infraction of the provisions of this chapter, or the rules issued under the authority of this chapter, pursuant to Chapter 18 of Title 2. Adjudication of any infractions shall be pursuant to Chapter 18 of Title 2.

CREDIT(S)

(Mar. 16, 1989, D.C. Law 7-181, § 5, 35 DCR 7715.)


§ 8-2035. Rules.

Within 180 days of March 16, 1989, the Mayor shall promulgate proposed rules, in accordance with subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2, to carry out the purposes of this chapter. The proposed rules shall include guidelines, applicable to owners and tenants of locally assisted housing accommodations, on keeping common household pets, pet size, types of pets, potential financial obligation of tenants, and standards of pet care. The proposed rules shall be submitted to the Council for a 45-day period of review, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, legal holidays, and days of Council recess. If the Council does not approve or disapprove the regulations, in whole or in part, by resolution within the 45-day review period, the proposed rules shall be deemed approved.

CREDIT(S)

(Mar. 16, 1989, D.C. Law 7-181, § 6, 35 DCR 7715.)

 



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