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Rick Perry Signs Texas Service Animal Legislation

Office of the Governor of Texas

Governor Rick Perry has signed legislation which will allow service animals in all public places.

Perry signed House Bill 489 on Friday, which allows those with disabilities to use the assistance of service animals in all public places, including retail businesses and restaurants, without having to show the qualifications or certifications of the assistance animal.

Perry was joined by the bill’s author, State Representative Jose Menendez, sponsor State Senator Carlos Uresti, and veterans Carol Anderson and Adan Gallegos for the signing ceremony.

Perry’s office says the bill was created to prevent discrimination. Businesses and public facilities may inquire about the type of assistance provided by the animal for purpose of admittance, but cannot deny entry to the animal.

“For veterans suffering from PTSD, a service animal can be a strong part of their recovery and a comforting presence in the midst of what can feel like chaotic and stressful situations,” said Perry. “This bill is a smart way for us to give back and help any Texan, including our veterans, lead a healthy, productive life.”

Menendez said “This bill is an important step in helping the growing number of disabled veterans, as well as others, who depend on service dogs in their daily lives, to have the same right of access to businesses and other public places that all citizens enjoy.”

HB 489 will become law on September 1st, 2013.

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