Full Statute Name:  West's Annotated Code of Maryland. Local Government. Division I. Definitions; General Provisions [Titles 1-3]. Title 1. Definitions; General Provisions. Subtitle 13. Miscellaneous. § 1-1314. Humane society or animal control officers; education and training requirements

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Primary Citation:  MD Code, Local Government, § 1-1314 Country of Origin:  United States Last Checked:  November, 2023 Alternate Citation:  MD LOCAL GOVT § 1-1314 Date Adopted:  2021 Historical: 
Summary: This Maryland law, added in 2021, creates education and training requirements for new humane and animal control officers. The training requires satisfactory completion of at least 80 hours of animal care and control coursework as described in the law. There are also continuing education requirements on an annual basis.

Application of section

(a) This section applies to all counties and municipalities.

Education and training requirements for new employees

(b)(1) Within the first 12 months of employment, a new officer of a humane society or animal control shall satisfactorily complete at least 80 hours of training for animal care and control professionals that is approved by the appropriate unit of a county or municipality.

(2) The training shall include instruction on:

(i) animal cruelty investigations;

(ii) the association between animal abuse and the abuse of the elderly or domestic violence, as defined in § 4-701 of the Family Law Article;

(iii) the use of legal resources, including constitutional law, the Annotated Code of Maryland, and county codes;

(iv) lawful searches and seizures;

(v) professionalism and ethical standards;

(vi) evidence collection and the chain of custody;

(vii) preparation for civil and criminal proceedings, including basic trial principles and due process protections;

(viii) conflict resolution and officer safety, including physical and mental health; and

(ix) animal diseases and zoonosis.

(3) The unit of the county or municipality may require other training in addition to the training specified in paragraph (2) of this subsection.

Continuing education requirements

(c)(1) An officer of a humane society or animal control shall satisfactorily complete at least 6 hours of continuing education approved by the appropriate unit of a county or municipality every year.

(2) The continuing education shall include instruction on the current laws applicable to officers.

Added by Acts 2021, c. 226, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2021; Acts 2021, c. 227, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2021.

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