BRAZIL, Ind. (WTHI) - Pet ownership in Brazil could cost a little more come next year.
City officials are waiting until 2018 to roll out an animal registration program that aims to link animals to their owners.
"A lot of departments in City Hall spend an awful lot of time, in the course of their duties, with animal control problems," said Council Member Steve Bell.
The city, on average, responds to ten animal complaints a week. "It’s an aggravation. It takes time away from the more important things, especially our law enforcement officers could be doing," explained Bell.
Earlier this month, Brazil City Council heard the first reading of an ordinance amendment. It would charge pet owners a mandatory one-time registration fee.
"We’re not going to make money on this. We're not going to lose money on this. This is just to get folks responsible and accountable for their pets," said Bell.
A spay or neutered animal will cost $5. An unaltered dog or cat will cost $10. "The ones that don't are the ones that we're having trouble with probably, and they're going to find out there's going to be a penalty that's much more costly than registering in the first place," said Bell.
He says this is not a catch-all. The goal is to crack down on animal control related incidents.
"I have nothing against pet owners. We just want to bring accountability and responsibility to our community," said Bell.
The city is still trying to decide where owners can register their pets. Suggestions include city hall. There is talk of possibly making the service available online.