This New Hampshire statute outlines the required referendum format if a town seeks to adopt an ordinance that prohibits the running at large of dogs. Towns that do not adopt this statutory format may regulate the running at large of dogs by enacting ordinances that comply with other statutes.
I. (a) Any city or town desiring to adopt the provisions of RSA 466:30-a may do so by approving as described in paragraph II or III the following question: "Shall we adopt the provisions of RSA 466:30-a which make it unlawful for any dog to run at large, except when accompanied by the owner or custodian, and when used for hunting, herding, supervised competition and exhibition or training for such?"
(b) The ballot containing the question shall include 2 squares next to the question allowing the voter to vote "Yes" or "No." If no cross is made in either of the squares, the ballot shall not be counted on the question.
(c) If a majority of those voting on the question vote "Yes," RSA 466:30-a shall apply within the city or town.
II. (a) In a town, the question shall be included in the annual meeting warrant upon a vote of the selectmen or upon application of voters according to the provisions of RSA 39:3 for annual meetings.
(b) The selectmen shall hold a public hearing on the question at least 15 days but not more than 30 days before the annual meeting. Notice of the hearing shall be posted in 2 public places in the town and published in a newspaper of general circulation in the town at least 7 days in advance.
(c) Voting shall be by official ballot if that system has been adopted by the town. In other towns, voting shall be by a special ballot prepared by the clerk.
III. In a city, the question shall be placed on the official ballot for any regular municipal election upon a vote of the city council or upon submission to the city council of a petition signed by 5 percent of the registered voters.
IV. Any town or city which has adopted RSA 466:30-a may rescind its adoption by majority vote of those voting on the question submitted to the voters in the same manner as provided for adoption under paragraph II or III. The question on rescission shall read: "Shall we rescind our adoption of RSA 466:30-a concerning dog control so that it will no longer be unlawful for a dog to run at large in this town (or city)?"
V. A town or city which either does not adopt, or rescinds its adoption of, RSA 466:30-a, may adopt other ordinances pertaining to dogs running at large under RSA 31:39 or RSA 47:17, XI.
Source. 1977, 379:1. 1979, 14:1. 1981, 407:1, eff. Aug. 22, 1981.