NYS Legislature Overwhelmingly Approves Legislation to Allow Dogs in ALL NYS Parks!

Legislation Next Goes to Governor for Final Approval

We have exciting news to share. In early June, the New York State Legislature voted overwhelmingly to approve legislation to allow dogs in ALL NYS parks, with reasonable restrictions. Currently, thousands of acres of NYS parks on Long Island, including all beaches, are off limits to people with dogs. The legislation is designed to increase access to New York State parks for dog owners and their pups, while at the same time protecting wildlife and respecting the ability of all New Yorkers to enjoy state parks.

The legislation passed both the NYS Senate and the NYS Assembly by huge margins—60 to 1 in the Senate and 142 to 3 in the Assembly!

We want to thank NYS Sen. Monica Martinez and NYS Assemblyman Steve Stern  for successfully shepherding these bills through the NYS Senate and Assembly. This never would have happened without their leadership in sponsoring this legislation.

We know they would love to hear from you! Please thank NYS Senator Monica Martinez and NYS Assemblyman Steve Stern for successfully leading the effort to lift the widespread ban on dogs in NYS parks on Long Island.

Call Sen. Martinez at 631-341-7111 or email her at NYS Sen. Monica Martinez.

Call Assemb. Stern at 631-271-8025 or email him  NYS Assemblyman Steve Stern.

We also want to thank all the NYS Senators and Assemblymembers from Long Island who responded to your and our calls by voting in favor of this legislation. Thank you for your calls! An especially big thank you to the bills’ co-sponsors: Sen. Dean Murray of Patchogue, Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky of Queens, Sen. Pete Harckman of Westchester/Hudson Valley, and Assemb. Charles Lavine of Glen Cove.

Thank Your NYS Senator https://www.nysenate.gov/find-my-senator

Thank Your NYS Assemblymember https://nyassembly.gov/mem/search/

We also want to acknowledge the four leading nonprofit organizations who wrote terrific Memorandums of Support for the legislation. Thank you to the American Kennel Club, the Animal Law Committee of the NYS Bar Association, the Humane Society of the United States, and the Nassau SPCA for their thoughtful letters of support. These letters of support provided meaningful endorsements of the legislation.

As these organizations and the sponsors of the legislation noted, this legislation will allow responsible dog owners more opportunities to enjoy outdoor activities with their well-behaved pets, while at the same time providing state parks with the ability to restrict access to sensitive wildlife areas, swimming beaches and other areas typically set off limits to dogs. The legislation requires that dogs be kept on leash, except in a designated off-leash area, and cleaned up after.

Even with these restrictions, the legislation promises to substantially increase access to public parks and positively impact the lives of thousands of New York State residents and their canine companions!

The legislation now goes to Governor Kathy Hochul for final approval. Given all the bills that come before the Governor, this may take a bit of time. The Governor has until the end of the year to sign the bill. Once the legislation has been transmitted to the Governor’s office, we will let everyone know so you can let the Governor know how important access to parks is to you and your dog.

In the meantime, if you have not already signed our petition on Change.org to Lift the Ban on Dogs on LI’s NYS Beaches or if you have dog-loving friends and family who live in NY who have not signed the petition yet, please continue to share the petition. More than 7,300 people from Rochester to Riverhead have already signed the petition, but the more people who sign our petition, the stronger the case for the Governor to approve the bill!

Thank you for your support.

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