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Ohio Senate OKs Bill To Regulate Exotic Animals

The state Senate has passed a bill to ban Ohioans from acquiring new exotic animals and regulate the current owners of tigers, lions and other creatures. The measure cleared the chamber by a 30-1 vote Wednesday, and goes now to the House for its consideration. Facilities accredited by some national zoo groups would be exempt from the bill, along with sanctuaries and research institutions. The legislation would allow current owners to keep their pets by obtaining a new state-issued permit by 2014 and meeting other strict conditions. Owners would have to pass a background check, post warning signs and obtain liability insurance or surety bonds. The measure follows the October release of dozens of exotic animals by their suicidal owner from Zanesville, following which authorities had to kill 48 animals.